A professional development plan, which should always be updated, evaluates a person’s present skill set, assists them in setting career goals, develops strategies, and identifies resources that will enable them to achieve those goals. A team member’s goals, necessary skill and competency development, and objectives must all be included in a professional development plan in order to enable career development and continual improvement. A professional development plan is usually developed by the management in close collaboration with the employee to pinpoint the knowledge and tools required to support both the employee’s professional objectives and the demands of the company’s operations. However, a person who is engaged in self-reflection can also create a professional development plan based on their career goals, skills, and knowledge. My specific role in nursing is addressing community health issues and ensuring an improvement of the health of the population. This paper will outline my personal and professional development plan.
Area of Focus
As a nurse educator, I want to focus on population health and the prevention of diseases as opposed to focusing on treating them and their complications. In the future, I want to obtain a position as a professor to be in direct contact with nursing students and guide them toward becoming healthcare professionals. As an MNS-prepared nurse, I would need to have a set of competencies. According to Fitzerald et al. (2020), core competencies for nurse educators are facilitating the learning environment, enabling learner development and socialization, and preparation of the curriculum. Thus, these competencies that relate to the ability to create a good learning environment are the ones I will use in my practice to ensure that my students can attain knowledge.
My main professional goal is to finish the MSN program and obtain a diploma and certification that will allow me to become an educator. Next, I want to participate in scholarly research to ensure that my work aligns with my nursing philosophy. Since I believe in an evidence-driven approach and want to focus on improving the health of the population through prevention as opposed to treating the consequences of an inadequate lifestyle and habits, finally, my third professional goal is to help guide several nurse research projects for my students, as I think this will help expand the body of knowledge and will help me fulfill the scholarship element of the Triade.
The other forces that may influence my role as a nurse educator are institutional, political, and economical. Mainly, the economic state of the country will have a direct effect on its population and the healthcare services that people can afford. The institution where I will be teaching will have its policies and objectives, which will affect the way I structure the curriculum. Finally, the political influence on my role is evident since the government may choose to expand the aid for citizens who cannot afford medical insurance or avoid such actions, which will have an effect on the number of patients and types of cases that nurses will have to work on in the future.
The nature of the healthcare environment in the United States has changed, affecting the objectives and strategies that educators should apply. In an effort to fulfill the demands of quickly evolving educational systems, colleges and universities throughout the country are rethinking the function of professors in an environment where learning is becoming more complex (AACN, n.d.). The production of scholarship relevant to the faculty member’s field is a crucial component of that function. The traditional bounds of research are currently being redefined in numerous academic fields, including history, engineering, social work, psychology, business, and education, and the faculty compensation structure that upholds these boundaries is also being looked at (AACN, n.d.). Therefore, nursing is not the only field that is currently undergoing a transformation and redesign in terms of effective teaching and learning strategies.
One’s nurse educator practice should be based on the principles of the Triage, which are teaching, service, and scholarship. Nursing scholarship is described as the methodical advancement of nursing instruction, research, and practice through rigorous investigation that is “significant to the profession, innovative, reproducible or elaborated, and subject to various forms of peer review” (AACN, n.d., para. 1). The following standards that define nursing scholarship use this definition. The commitment to scholarly approaches to education, practice, and research provides shared links across the academic nursing community, even though the aim of institutions of higher learning differs in each location. This article aims to expand, extend, and clarify the scholarly work done by nurses in academic settings. The criteria outlined in this paper will be applied differently by each institution, but they will serve as a framework for the development of nursing knowledge, which will ultimately enhance people’s health.
Nursing faculty frequently work in a system that rewards and promotes a limited notion of academic achievement, similar to other disciplines that combine scientific investigation and application through professional services. However, the priority for teaching, scholarship, and service in nursing could be closely related to the profession’s objectives.
Leadership for Nurse Educators
The promotion and attainment of competent and confident nurses are influenced by educational leadership in the clinical setting. The newly licensed registered nurse who is entering the workforce is typically exposed to a variety of experiential learning opportunities and interacts with the nurse who is in charge of the clinical learning and development in the first year of graduate school (Coventry & Russell, 2020). Only a small amount of research has been done on the subject of clinical nurse educators’ leadership responsibilities, both current and future.
Clinical function and leadership value are impacted by challenges to the clinical nurse educator’s identity and confidence. It was not necessary for the clinical nurse educator to hold a managerial role in order to guide and affect graduates’ smooth entry into practice and integration into the clinical setting, as Coventry and Russel (2020) report. The clinical nurse educator engages and advances the graduate nurses in their first year of nursing, displaying a consistent leadership style. In order to meet modern healthcare standards, promote high-quality patient care, and increase new nurse retention within the healthcare organization, the education role is crucial.
By influencing people to accomplish predetermined goals, nursing leadership aims to satisfy the clinical needs of the patient as well as the needs of the healthcare organization. The nurse educator position is essential to the institution’s mission of providing patient-centered care that is modeled after best practices. It also helps students and newly licensed nurses transition from being students to being competent and safe practitioners by guiding them through the process. The nurse educator’s demonstrated practical leadership is presented in connection to the abilities, qualities, and competence necessary for the job. These qualities are recommended as essential to the nurse educator’s participation in the clinical leadership team for resolving clinical concerns, formulating policies and procedures, and serving as a mentor in the professional and personal growth of other nurses.
A shared vision that provides meaning and direction serves as the foundation of transformation leadership, a relational leadership style that encourages a connection between leader and follower. To succeed in the clinical context, transactional leadership, a task-focused leadership style, uses goal-setting, direction-giving, and rewards. For the benefit of the team, authentic leadership places a strong emphasis on the leader’s capacity for insight into their own and others’ beliefs, values, and capabilities. But rather than nurses with a clinical focus, these leadership philosophies are more typically associated with nurse executives and managers.
A congruent leadership style can be used to clarify and comprehend leadership as practiced in the clinical setting by personnel with a clinical focus in all healthcare-related professions. According to Coventry and Russel (2020), the dominant leadership approach at the time, transformational leadership, was insufficient to describe the style of leadership exhibited by leaders in a clinical context. According to some research, congruent leadership is characterized by motivation, inspiration, approachability, visibility, actions based on values and beliefs, effective communication, empowerment, and being led by passion and compassion, as well as the ability to forge long-lasting relationships without the need for a title or a position in a hierarchical structure.
Specific steps to enable professional growth include obtaining a diploma and necessary credentials to be able to teach. Next, because I want to advance my understanding of adult learning, I would have to revisit the Adult Learning Theory and learn the specific ways in which I can help facilitate my student’s independent studies, as this is the preferred way of learning for older individuals. Next, I would want to conduct research that is based on assessing the problems that nursing students face, such as burnout, the high load of information they have to learn, and the stress that they might experience. Additionally, I would want to be a part of population health research that focuses on the promotion of a healthy lifestyle, as this is one of the keys to ensuring the prevention of chronic conditions.
A comparable shift in nursing education that is best directed toward effectiveness is required, given the dynamic nature of the healthcare industry and the rising demands placed on nurses. Teachers must be skilled in self-reflection to improve their teaching strategies, much as nursing students are taught to do so in order to fulfill clients’ requirements. Reflecting on one’s own experiences consciously can assist a person in learning from their experiences and advance their practice when they are directed by the literature (Grech, 2021). Teachers should consider not only their own reflections but also the opinions of their pupils and colleagues. When self-reflection goes beyond simple introspection and challenges presumptions about how to educate while also addressing their social and political context, it becomes crucial. Based on this paper and the professional development goals and ethical standards I have set for myself, I would argue that I can achieve this plan. I am dedicated to advancing the nursing profession and helping new nurses find better ways of helping patients, which is why I think I will succeed.
American Association of College of Nursing [AACN]. (n.d.). Defining scholarship for the discipline of nursing. Web.
Coventry, T. & Russell, K. (2020). The clinical nurse educator as a congruent leader: A mixed method study. Journal of Nursing Education and Practice, 11, 8.
Fitzgerald, A., McNelis, A., & Billings, D. (2019). NLN core competencies for nurse educators: Are they present in the course descriptions of academic nurse educator programs? Nursing Education Perspectives, 41(1), 4-9.
Grech, J. (2021). Critical self-reflection for nurse educators: Now more than ever! Teaching And Learning in Nursing, 16(1), 89-91.