Beginning in the fall 2010 semester, the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing (JHUSON) will offer online courses for current and prospective nurse educators, a flexible alternative for those preparing to teach the next generation of nurses.
Equipping nurse educators with the skills and knowledge necessary to be effective, innovative teachers is a key part of addressing the nursing shortage, according to Pam Jeffries, DNS, RN, FAAN, ANEF, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at JHUSON. To educate more nurses, she said, we first need to prepare more qualified educators.
"With today's educator shortage, the opportunities schools can provide for educational mobility and career advancement are greatly needed," Jeffries said. "By offering the nurse educator courses online, we can provide future and current educators the tools needed to begin a teaching career or to enhance what they are already doing in their teaching practices."
"Nursing education is undergoing a transformation," Jeffries added. "These courses are designed to prepare nurse educators to incorporate innovation and best practices into their teaching."
The Nurse Educator Certificate online program is funded by a $458,000 award from the Maryland Higher Education Commission/Health Services Cost Review Commission Nurse Support Program II.
The certificate program is composed of four three-credit courses that cover the basics of teaching strategies, educational evaluation, and curriculum theory and design. Students can complete coursework as their schedules allow, making the online certificate option convenient for those with busy schedules.
The program is open to post-master's students or those enrolled in a master's, DNP or PhD program. Participants will receive training in instructional design, using technology in teaching, and the inclusion of current nursing research and clinical practice in the curriculum.
"Being a good nurse is just the first step to becoming a good nurse educator, " says Anne Belcher, PhD, RN, AOCN, CNE, FAAN, director of the school's Office for Teaching Excellence. "Going through a program like the Nurse Educator Certificate option is crucial to being an effective teacher, whether in the classroom or clinical setting. "
Those who are interested in the program are invited to participate in an information session and webinar on Monday, May 17 beginning at 4 p.m. More details and registration information are available online.
The Nurse Educator certificate is one of three new online programs offered at the School, along with the Clinical Nurse Specialist and Health master's track options.