Importance of Nursing Continuing Education (CE)
When we nurses work within the same specialty, unit, or hospital for a significant amount of time, we often become very efficient and skilled at what we do within that particular framework. Unfortunately, the practice of nursing is so vast that we may forget about core nursing principles related to certain medications, procedures, or psychosocial needs of patients. One of the benefits of online nursing CEU is dusting out the corners of our minds, reminding ourselves of important nursing principles.
Speaking of webs, did you know that back in the 1970s, the Austrian philosopher Ivan Illich, who at one point held an appointment as a visiting professor of Philosophy, Science, Technology and Society at Penn State, coined the term “educational webs” to describe what he believed to be a better structure of education than current western methods? He described this in the quotation below:
“The current search for new educational funnels must be reversed into the search for their institutional inverse: educational webs which heighten the opportunity for each one to transform each moment of his living into one of learning, sharing, and caring.” (Ivan Illich, Deschooling Society, November 1970)
NursingCrib will soon be launching its own Learning Network on Coursepark which aims to promote that same learning, sharing, and caring environment in a virtual “web” of nurses that will be able to influence our profession positively. Healthcare changes frequently in modern nations, and the classroom alone cannot possibly plumb the depths of education that nurses need today. We need more interaction and connections than ever before to be confident and competent care providers!
2. Become a leader by expanding your knowledge base.
Who is a leader? I believe a leader is someone who gains followers by providing something they need or admire. We all admire those in our profession who have broad experience, and who are capable of answering questions and practicing nursing efficiently and professionally. Expanding your knowledge base through nursing continuing education and through learning about current healthcare issues will enhance your leadership abilities. You will be able to provide answers or valuable input to questions related to patient care, disease conditions, or proposed changes in policy/procedure. The phrase “knowledge is power” is indeed true.
3. Keep your license up to date.
Many states in the USA require a certain number of Nursing CEUs in order to renew your license. This link details the requirements in each state for both RNs and Advance Practice RNs (APNs). If you have any question about your particular state or country, refer to your specific Board or Association. For US, those websites can be accessed by clicking on the state name listed in the link above.