Title

Characteristics of an Effective Nursing Clinical Instructor: The State of the Science

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2018

Description

Aims and objectives: To analyse the perceived characteristics of an effective nursing clinical instructor and methods for measure instructor effectiveness. This review also examined importance of characteristics based on student age. Background: The clinical instructor has a vital role in clinical education. While the role may be well defined, the characteristics these instructors need to do their jobs effectively are not. Design: An integrative review from 1985 to present using four key terms: nursing, clinical, teaching and effectiveness. This review revealed 37 articles that met the inclusion criteria for analysis. Methods: Inclusion criteria included studies related to nursing clinical teaching effectiveness of the clinical instructor in a direct patient care setting. An integrative review table of the studies was made by the author. Keywords were analyzed in the results column, and same concepts were grouped together. Results: A synthesis of current research revealed three dominant themes: competency, the ability to develop interpersonal relationships and certain personality traits. The analysis of the literature suggests the ability to develop interpersonal relationships is the most valued skill. Overall, approachability emerged as the most important personality trait needed to be an effective clinical instructor. The analysis also revealed a difference regarding the priority of characteristics based on age of the student. Conclusion: The analysis of the literature suggests the ability to develop interpersonal relationships is the most valued skill for clinical instructors. Overall, approachability emerged as the most important personality trait needed to be an effective clinical instructor. Relevance to clinical practice: Future studies should continue to evaluate the extent of the dominant themes especially considering the rise of the millennial student generation.

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