181700 Leaping forward in linking academia and practice for improvement of nursing education

Tuesday, October 28, 2008: 11:10 AM

Susan J. Zahner, DrPH, RN , School of Nursing, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI
Marilyn Haynes-Brokopp, MS, RN, BC , School of Nursing, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI
Background: “Linking Education and Practice for Excellence in Public Health Nursing,” (LEAP Project) is a three year, HRSA funded, statewide, collaborative, public health nurse education and practice improvement project designed to address needs for new knowledge and skills in population-based public health nursing practice among students, faculty, and practicing public health nurses (PHN). The proposed session will focus on the successes of the first two years of the project related to grant activities aimed at improving undergraduate education for PHN practice. Methods: Six regional learning collaboratives composed of practicing nurses and academic faculty were established. These groups meet regularly and have focused on developing a variety of best practices and strategies for population-based and culturally competent field experiences for nursing students. A web-delivered continuing education course for nurse preceptors working with student nurses has been provided at no cost to preceptors. Two continuing education conferences focused on public health nursing standards have been provided for nursing faculty across the state. Results:Regional Learning Collaboratives activities have included: creating resources for new teaching and learning strategies based upon public health interventions, competencies and scope and standards; designing and pilot-testing an student electronic portfolio of field experience projects; holding a curricular review workday for nine schools of nursing; creating a live WIKI website for agencies and schools to share student community health projects; compiling virtual learning tools for student public health experiences; and designing and testing a communication tool for students, faculty and preceptors. In addition, over 100 nurses have participated in the online preceptor course since the beginning of the project. Two well attended conferences for faculty were held. Conclusions: Supporting collaboration between academia and practice through facilitation, websites, continuing education, and communication is an effective means of improving undergraduate education for public health nursing practice.

Learning Objectives:
1. Demonstrate awareness of current trends to encourage linkages between academia and practice in public health nursing. 2. Recognize value of academic/practice linkages to improve contemporary nursing education. 3. Identify methodology to develop collaborative partnerships with mutual benefit or academia and practitioners

Keywords: Nursing Education, Public Health Nursing

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the project director of the project that is being presented.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.