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6 Essential Qualities of a Nurse Educator

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Nurses and teachers share similar qualities that make them effective in their respective fields. Often nurturers by nature, both professions tend to attract those who enjoy being of service to other people. This is the reason why transitioning from a nursing job to a teaching one might be quite comfortable for many people, and with nurse educators being in great demand, such a career move could be very rewarding as well.  It's the mindset of earning your nursing pin to helping future nurses earn theirs!

Have you ever thought about becoming a nurse educator? If you have these qualities, chances are, you’d do well in this specialization of nursing.

1. Patient

Patience is a trait that often needs cultivation, particularly in those handling large groups of people on a regular basis. It is a necessary quality for nurse educators, as they are often bombarded with questions and problems in both the classroom and clinical setting. Patience with both oneself and with students can help create a more rational nurse educator, and guide nursing students better as it helps to overcome fear, anxiety, and discouragement.  

2. Knowledgeable

You don’t need to know everything in the profession in order to become a nurse educator, but you do need know what you’re teaching. Nursing, as a profession, is ever changing, and nurse educators also need to put in a lot of effort in order to stay up to date on current information and practices in the field. Additionally, knowing how to impart that knowledge to students in a way that they can understand is critical, and can oftentimes be the distinction between a good nurse educator and a great one.  Being a good communicator is important too.  Nursing students will rely on you for valuable insight and important to help them pass licensing exams such as the NCLEX.

3. Good Communicator

Nurse educators serve as role models to student nurses, and they need to know how to effectively deal with any situation provided to them especially in the classroom setting. Good communication skills will allow the nurse educator to interact well with students, and pave the way for a better discussion in class.

4. Has Experience and Expertise

While some institutions and nursing schools might hire you even without any staff nurse experience in your resume, it is admittedly a bit of a red flag. Nurse educators need to know how it’s like to work the floor at a hospital or clinic in order to properly teach nurses, so having hospital experience is definitely a plus for those who are thinking of making the switch to teaching.

5. Adaptable

Nurse educators are exposed to different sets of students at different times and with different learning needs, so adaptability is a key trait in this line of work.

6. Passionate about Nursing

A great nurse educator must have the passion not just for teaching and learning, but also for the profession he or she is a part of. Nursing is a challenging job, as is nursing, and not having the passion for either can make you not as effective as a nurse educator.

Nurse educators are not just the teachers you need to please in order to graduate and earn that nursing pin. They are vital in the continuing education of both nurses and those aspiring to become nurses in the future. Often referred to as professors, they combine their clinical abilities and experiences with teaching in order to train those whose calling is the same as theirs. 


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