Study Addresses Ways To Combat Nursing Faculty Shortage

To address the faculty shortage problem, schools of nursing are reexamining how they provide clinical education to undergraduate students. Researchers from the NYU College of Nursing (NYUCN), funded with a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Evaluating
Innovations in Nursing Education
Program, have published a description of a study addressing this issue in the online edition Journal of Nursing Education.

The NYUCN researchers, in collaboration with the National Development Research Institute, USA and the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, evaluated a new and unique clinical teaching model, using high-fidelity human patient simulation to partially substitute for traditional clinical teaching approaches.

The previous traditional laboratory and hospital-based instruction model required 4.5 faculty instructors for 24 students. With the incorporation of this model using high-fidelity human patient simulation, now only three faculty instructors are needed for the same 24 students. Additionally, with the NYUCN model, student group sizes decreased by 25 percent for both hospital-based clinical and classroom-based laboratory sessions.

“This model gives us a win-win during the current faculty shortage—by reducing the demand for high quality clinical instructors while simultaneously reducing the number of students an instructor teaches each simulation lab or clinical session,” says Hila Richardson, principal investigator for the evaluation and clinical professor for the NYUCN.

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