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Thank you for agreeing to become a preceptor for our Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) students at Rockhurst University. The success of our program depends on the dedication of health care providers such as yourself who are interested in contributing to our students’ educational process. The purpose of this guide is to acquaint you with the student and preceptor role objectives and expectations during the Clinical Preceptorship.
Expectations of the Preceptor
- Serve to bridge the gap between theory and practice.
- Assist the student to become oriented with the health care facility, as well as organizational policies and procedures.
- Serve as a role model for the student by demonstrating appropriate behavior and providing timely and appropriate feedback.
- Create and maintain an open and safe learning environment.
- Determine appropriate assignments or tasks for the preceptee.
- Facilitate and evaluate learning for the preceptee.
- Collaborate with the preceptee and the course manager to ensure expectations are being met.
As a preceptor, you play multiple roles, such as:
- Facilitator/Socialization agent
- Role Model
Expectations of the Student
- Arrive on time and take breaks at an appropriate time
- Review personal goals for the precepted experience with the Preceptor, and revise if needed
- Determine an appropriate work schedule and complete precepted dates as scheduled. Dates & hours selected must not conflict with classes or other clinicals
- Be dressed in the Rockhurst nursing uniform unless scrubs are required for the agency or unit. Any time students are on hospital property, they must be in the complete (and appropriate) student uniform or hospital-issued scrubs
- Demonstrate an attitude of cooperation and willingness to learn
- Establish rapport with clients & families
- Work as a team member
- Demonstrate effective communication with clients, staff members, and the Preceptor
- Follow all hospital regulations and guidelines for practice
- Immediately report any adverse events or outcomes (to Preceptor, Unit manager, & Course Manager or Clinical Coordinator, depending on the issue)
- Seek new learning experiences, and request help when needed
- Accept guidance and suggestions with a positive attitude
- Improve in skills, knowledge, and understanding of the professional nurse role
- Notify the Instructor, Course Manager, and Preceptor of emergency changes in schedule
Important Information Before the First Day
It is important to cover the following items with the student prior to the start of clinicals, or during your first clinical meeting.
- Clinical shift schedule.
- Required dress code based on student handbook and facility policy.
- Parking policy
- ID badge
- Computer access/training
- Expectations regarding timeliness, professionalism, preparedness, etc.
- Clinical absence policy and expectations
- Current skill level and position in course progression
- Clinical objectives and goals. (Course and clinical objectives will be provided by the course manager to guide the students clinical experience.)
Each hospital organization may differ regarding the orientation process for nursing students. Please coordinate with your course manager and agency to ensure proper student orientation. On the first day of the rotation, students need to be oriented by the preceptor to the important hospital areas and the nursing unit. Pertinent unit procedures regarding PPE and COVID-19 guidelines should be reviewed before the student engages in patient care.
All documentation needed for preceptors will be handled by either the hospital agency or the nursing administration office at Rockhurst University. We recommend preceptors check their Rockhurst and agency emails frequently to ensure that further documentation or information is not needed.
Setting expectations, goals, and objectives
- Course and clinical objectives will be provided by your course managers and should guide the student’s clinical experience.
- At the beginning of the clinical experience, the student and preceptor should sit down and discuss the clinical objectives. The preceptor should also inquire about other goals or objectives the student has for their clinical experience. This information helps the preceptor plan the clinical experience and provide learning opportunities and student-specific instruction.
- The preceptor should also be aware of the student’s current skills and knowledge base as it pertains to the clinical setting. Using the program plan of study and previous clinical objectives, the preceptor can gain an understanding of the skills and experiences the students are already equipped with.
A crucial role of the preceptor is being an evaluator. Providing feedback to students is necessary for their learning and growth. As a preceptor, on the first day of the clinical experience, prepare the students that feedback will be provided often throughout the precepted experience. By providing consistent, constructive feedback throughout the clinical experience, surprises can be avoided at the time of the summative evaluation.
Summative Evaluation Process
At the end of the clinical experience, an evaluation will be performed based on the clinical objectives and the clinical evaluation tool that will be provided to you. Course managers will detail when the midterm and final evaluation must take place, as well as how to use the clinical evaluation tool and clinical skills checklist. All clinical assignments must be completed in order for the final evaluation to take place.