The process of precepting nursing students: balancing responsibilities and relationships

Fagner, Glenda R. M. (1995) The process of precepting nursing students: balancing responsibilities and relationships. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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For the nurse preceptors in the study the core variable identified in precepting nursing students was 'balancing responsibilities and relationships'. Thus becoming a preceptor was a self-reflective and interactive process of learning to balance the responsibilities and relationships which resulted from being a preceptor. The basic social-psychological process consisted of five stages: (1) making the decision, (2) assuming precepting, (3) learning to be a preceptor, (4) gaining confidence, and (5) continuing on or taking a break. A period of personal and professional appraisal occurred as preceptors were deciding to take on the role. In balancing the responsibilities of staff nurse and educator and the relationships to patients and students the preceptors learned to interact with the school of nursing, nursing administration and colleagues. Some preceptors experienced frustration in trying to balance responsibilities and relationships because there was a sense of obligation to the student to provide clinical educational opportunities and at the same time preceptors had to balance the demands and responsibilities of staff nurse and practitioner. Furthermore, there was evidence that preceptors had to weigh the benefits to the student and the drawbacks to the patient in providing learning experiences. -- There was variation within each of the stages and through theoretical sampling of data the researcher was able to identify the different factors which accounted for the variation. These factors could be divided into two main categories: (1) structural constraints in the workplace and (2) personal characteristics of student and/or preceptor. The perceived potential of the student fostered preceptor development and perceived student initiative guided the decision to be involved in preceptorship. There seems to be a need to increase support for preceptors from school of nursing faculty and nursing service administration. Some informants indicated that they had to take a break and reevaluate their commitment to precepting nursing students.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 10474
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 96-102.
Department(s): Nursing, Faculty of
Date: 1995
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Nursing--Study and teaching (Preceptorship)
Medical Subject Heading: Education, Nursing; Preceptorship.

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