Guidelines/Expectations For Nurse Practitioner Clinical Preceptor
Clinical preceptors are expected to:
- Orient the Nurse Practitioner (NP) student to the office/clinical environment, methods of operation of the agency, and necessary clinical and practice protocols/guidelines.
- Provide sufficient space to allow the student to see clients and to perform at a pace where learning can occur without interfering with the overall client flow. In the initial phase of the clinical component of the program, students elicit health histories and perform physical examinations at a pace slower than that of experienced clinicians.
- Provide the NP student with access to the kind of client encounters (age, type problems, etc.) that are needed to achieve the student's learning objectives for the clinical course enrolled.
- Provide supervision and validation of the accuracy of the student's history, chart review, and physical examination findings and his/her assessment of the client's presenting condition(s).
- Review the student's tentative plan for management of the client's health promotion needs and/or presenting conditions and provide necessary guidance to ensure appropriateness and comprehensiveness of the care plan.
- Supervise the student with initiation of client management regimens and referral procedures.
- Meet briefly with NP program clinical site facilitator faculty member who makes site visits during the semester to review student progress and share ideas concerning ways to facilitate student learning.
- Maintain communication with the program faculty as necessary throughout the semester. Any problems that could interfere with effective care provision or the student's learning should be brought to the student's and/or program faculty's attention as soon as possible.
- Complete a Preceptor Evaluation of Nurse Practitioner Student Performance form reflecting the student's performance/progress upon completion of the semester. It is essential that the preceptor meet with the NP student to review the evaluation. Following the meeting, mail the evaluation to the student's clinical faculty in self-addressed envelope provided or give the form to the student to return. This summative evaluation should be done in conjunction with frequent and ongoing feedback to the student throughout the clinical experience.
- Share ideas for improving the clinical component of the NP program with the program faculty.
Note: In settings where there are multiple clinical preceptors, each clinical preceptor should be responsible for no more than two NP students. Only one student is usually placed in a given semester in settings where the clinical preceptor is the sole provider.