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Clinical Faculty Guide


Clinical Agency

  • Who is your contact at the clinical unit/agency?

  • Take a tour of the agency.

    • Meet with the head nurse/charge nurse of the unit where you will be conducting clinical rotation.

    • Ask if there is a location where you can meet with students for pre and post conference.

    • Ask if the students can attend change of shift report.

  • Shadow a nurse on the unit if possible for a couple of hours to become familiar with the type of patients and the unit flow (if not familiar).

  • Shadow a current/seasoned clinical faculty.

  • What are the agency’s requirements for preparation of the clinical instructor?

    • Orientation to computerized medical records, medication administration policies for faculty and students.

    • Obtain agency name badge, login and passwords.

    • Specific agency policies for student and instructor, uniform requirements, etc.



  • Contact Students:

    • How do you contact students? Email, phone numbers, college learning management system (LMS).

  • Contact School of Nursing

    • Who does the instructor contact for student concerns or questions? Clinical coordinator or lead instructor?

    • Just in time communication: Who can the instructor call for immediate concerns?


Nursing Program Materials

  • Obtain a copy of or access to the nursing program manual and clinical policies and procedures.

  • Obtain a copy of the current course syllabi, to ensure the instructor is aware of the didactic/classroom and skills lab learnings.

  • Consider sitting in on a current didactic lecture.

  • Obtain a copy of the clinical objectives.

    • The instructor will further delineate daily clinical goals and objectives

      • Goals must be appropriate for the scope and sequence for the student's level/progress in the program.


Student Expectations Assignments

  • Write student expectations. Ask for example(s).

  • What type of patient assignments are appropriate for the type of unit, level of student, and objectives for this clinical rotation? Observational, specific nursing role, total patient care, or a specific skills.

  • What type of pre-clinical and post-clinical written assignments are appropriate for this rotation? Ask for examples or suggestions.

  • What is the usual flow of the clinical day in this agency? 

  • How should students be assigned breaks or lunch breaks? 


Student Evaluation

  • Obtain a copy(s) of the student evaluation? How will you be provided evaluations for students?

    • Make sure you understand the evaluation.

    • Ask for clarification, if needed.

  • How often are the students formally evaluated i.e.: daily, mid-rotation, or only final evaluation. 




Koharchik, L. (2014). Starting the job as adjunct instructor. The American Journal of Nursing 114 (8), 57-60.

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