Promoting Respect for and Inclusion of Diversity among Clinical Faculty
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Session presented on Sunday, July 26, 2015: Purpose: Evaluate the impact of a diversity-related video on the awareness, knowledge, skills, and confidence of clinical nursing instructors for fostering a teaching environment that promotes respect for diversity. Background: Respect for and inclusion of diversity in academic environments and clinical nurse educational settings in particular, is of increasing conceRNFollowing anecdotal accounts of offensive comments made by faculty at our institution, members of the baccalaureate program designed a project to address diversity-related issues with clinical instructors. Methods: We developed and tested the impact of a diversity-related video with clinical instructors using pre and post-test questionnaires. The video included several students and faculty discussing strategies for creating an environment that promotes and respects diversity. Our goal was to ensure that clinical instructors were aware that diversity was a priority and, most importantly, provide them the tools to put this into practice in their role as clinical educators. A follow up questionnaire was sent to instructors 8-12 weeks after the session. Results: A total of 20 clinical instructors completed both the pre and post test at orientation. Almost all n=19, 95%) were female with a mean age between 41-50 years of age. The majority were Caucasian (n=15, 75%), 4 (20%) were African American and one person (5%) identified as Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander. More than half of the respondents (n=13, 65%) had master's degrees with nearly equal numbers who were baccalaureate (n=3;' 15%) or doctorally trained (n=4; 20%). The majority (n=15; 75%) had 10 years or more years of nursing experience. Participants' teaching experience varied however the mean was between 2-5 years. The majority (n=13; 65%) has most often taught second-degree baccalaureate students. Following the video, participants reported significant (p<.05) increases in 4 of the 11 areas related to knowledge, skills, and confidence. Specifically, instructors reported greater understanding of the kinds of comments that could be considered offensive, greater skill and confidence to create a learning environment that promotes respect and diversity, and the confidence to speak up with students if they hear offensive comments. Conclusion: This study serves as a preliminary assessment of the impact of diversity education on the skills, knowledge, and confidence of clinical instructors to create a learning environment that promotes and respects diversity. The findings of this study can be used to inform new strategies for a formalized approach for ensuring that clinical instructors are sensitive to diversity issues. Other schools of nursing who face similar challenges may benefit from adapting this process to address diversity-related issues in their own settings.