The Impact of a Dedicated Educational Model (DEU) on Staff Nurses' Perception of the Professional Practice Environment
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Session presented on Friday, July 24, 2015: While research exists on the benefits of a Dedicated Educational Unit (DEU) for the Student Nurse (SN), there is a shortage of literature regarding the impact of the DEU on the staff nurses/preceptors who participate in DEU education. Nearly 73,000 RNare predicted to leave the nursing profession annually related to retirement, childrearing, career changes or returning to school (T.-C. f. Nursing). Barriers contributing to enrolling greater numbers of students in nursing programs include an aging workforce, a shortage of nursing faculty, lack of clinical placement opportunities, and an education gap which fails to meet the needs of the current patient population and adequately prepare nurses for professional practice (I. o. M. C. o. t. R. W. J. F. I. o. t. F. o. Nursing, 2011). North Shore University Hospital and Adelphi University School of Nursing partnered to launch the DEU in the fall of 2012. University faculty educated staff mentors on the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to perform effectively in their role. Data on professionalism was collected using the Revised Professional Practice Environment Scale (RRPPE) (Erickson, Duffy, Ditomassi, & Jones, 2009). Purpose: To determine the impact of a DEU on staff nurses' perception of the professional practice environment in a defined sample of nurses on a neuroscience unit using the Revised Professional Practice Environment Scale (RRPPE). To use the findings of this study to inform future research on staff who act as mentors in a DEU. Methods: Single method repeated design. Results: The findings suggested a greater need for professional development and professional strategies for staff mentors inclusive of structured educational programs to ascertain proper preparation, teaching, and assessing of the student nurses clinical development. Conclusion: Further research using phenomenology and other qualitative methods may gain a better understanding of the professional needs of mentors.