Nurses who enjoy teaching others can find many great opportunities as educators in a variety of settings. Don't just think the only place for education is in a classroom! In today's healthcare and educational environment, Nursing Educators are finding many new ways to teach others beyond the traditional classroom and individualized instruction!
Patient Educator - While all nurses teach their patients in the course of patient care delivery, some nurses are in Patient Educator roles and work with a specific population of patients such as Diabetics to help them learn more about their disease and how to manage their own care. As a Patient Educator, you might conduct classes, develop teaching materials such as handouts and booklets, and work with patients on a one-to-one basis. You might work in a hospital, clinic, physician's office, or even with a home health agency. This role may require an advanced practice degree in some settings.
Staff Development /Inservice Coordinator - Health care is a field that is changing on an almost daily basis. There are new procedures, new equipment, new medications arriving in the health care setting and nurses and other health care providers must continue to expand their education. As a Staff Development Nurse, you would work in a variety of health care delivery settings to assess the learning needs of health providers and coordinate the delivery of ongoing education within that setting. This role may require an advanced practice degree in some settings.
Clinical Preceptor - Nurses often work side by side new employees or new nurses to help them learn the work routines in a particular health care setting.
Nursing Faculty - Nurses who work in the academic setting provide the nursing education for students pursuing an career in nursing. To teach in the academic setting requires that each educator has experience within a specific specialty within nursing and an advanced practice degree. Often educators will have a doctorate in nursing or a health-related field.
These are just some of the educator roles for nurses. While most of these roles also require some direct patient care experience, they provide opportunities to teach both patients and other health care providers. If you enjoy teaching others, these roles may be just what you are looking for!
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