Expanding Ethical Insight and Skill Development among Nursing Students, Faculty, and Practicing Nurses

Friday, 3 August 2012: 10:35 AM

Tanya Sudia-Robinson, RN, PhD
Georgia Baptist College of Nursing, Mercer University, Atlanta, GA

Learning Objective 1: Discuss teaching strategies to expand the ethical insight and skill development among nursing students, faculty, and practicing nurses.

Learning Objective 2: Describe simulation scenarios designed to elicit early recognition of subtle ethical issues and develop effective intervention strategies.

Purpose: The ability to recognize ethical issues is straightforward when students, faculty, and practicing nurses are presented with cogent cases expressing opposing points of view.  Most nursing programs prepare students for such experiences through a variety of teaching techniques in both classroom and clinical settings.  However, most students, faculty and practicing nurses are not adequately prepared to recognize the subtle beginnings of issues that frequently emerge in a variety of clinical settings.

Methods: By expanding the ethical lens of students and faculty to develop skills in the early recognition of developing ethical issues, interventions can be effectively implemented to prevent escalation.   Similar to teaching students preventive nursing care such as early recognition and intervention to prevent exacerbation of physiologic complications, students can be taught ethical identification and intervention skills through a variety of techniques, including simulation experiences. 

Results: This session will assist nursing faculty and practicing nurses to develop creative teaching strategies designed to expand the ethical insight of their students.  Practical examples that can be transferred to various specialties will be discussed along with simulation examples.  Developing ethical insight and determining effective early intervention will assist students, faculty and practicing nurses to more effectively engage patients and family members in the overall nursing care process.

Conclusion: Additional components of this session will focus on review of a mixed methods study designed to elicit the perceptions of nursing students about emerging ethical issues and their ability to recognize ethical issues.   Faculty perceptions of nursing students’ development of ethical insight and their ability to determine a plan for intervention are also described.   The session will conclude with a discussion of research instruments appropriate for further exploration in this area, as well as the ongoing refinement of existing tools for this field of inquiry.