A Day In a Life of A Clinical Instructor

Perhaps students would think that the most worked out individuals between students and a clinical instructor is the former. Basically, everyone would see how clinical instructors boss around students and make some sanctions for incompetence. However, this is just the surface. You need to see what is beyond supervising students.  Because a day in a life of a clinical instructor is usually not as easy as it seemed.

Start the Day with Plans Outlined the Night Before…

Before dosing off most CI’s make outline on how to implement learning in the area assigned. This might take a few minutes but constructing a good plan with an eye to details may take to as much as 2 hours. The more the activity planned the more the preparation is needed. Planning to impart learning on a certain skill requires reviewing the skill performance itself.

Get to the hospital before the shift starts…

Clinical instructors provide opportunities for students to develop skills, attitude and knowledge of a nurse in a realistic work setting. This means getting to the hospital before the shift starts. No wonder CI’s make sanctions for those who were unable to show up on time.

Coordinate with health care team on the area where the students will be exposed…

It is utterly important to collaboratively work with the health care team assigned in the area of student exposure. CI’s should have the ability to establish rapport to the staff and coordinate activities with them. Some institutions have protocols and policies on student nurse’s exposure on the area. It is best to be oriented with these guidelines and always acknowledge the importance of communicating properly with the health care team.

Assign specific patients to students….

This task might seem easy but really it’s harder than you think it is. Patient loading, as most calls this task, requires a wide range of understanding and insight. Assigning a male student to a female patient might seem awkward. There are lots of considerations to think of when assigning patient to students. It requires a certain level of understanding and insight to be able to come up with a good pair.

Individually Coaches and Supervises Students in Rendering Care

It takes an organized schedule to be able to coach each student throughout the clinical experience. This is why having a good plan is utterly important for the success of the job.

Some CI’s stuff in more activities in their day such as giving surprise quizzes or asking the students to make their own plan of care after checking out the assigned patients. Whatever tasks CI’s do in a day, they always come in prepared and ready to face unexpected difficult situations as they are not just responsible for their own actions but the actions of their students as well.

Image courtesy of samuelmerritt.edu

Daisy Jane Antipuesto RN MN

Currently a Nursing Local Board Examination Reviewer. Subjects handled are Pediatric, Obstetric and Psychiatric Nursing. Previous work experiences include: Clinical instructor/lecturer, clinical coordinator (Level II), caregiver instructor/lecturer, NC2 examination reviewer and staff/clinic nurse. Areas of specialization: Emergency room, Orthopedic Ward and Delivery Room. Also an IELTS passer.

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