An earned certificate demonstrates professional development and knowledge and skills applicable to current and future role and responsibilities involving teaching and learning, curriculum design, and assessment of learning. The NEC expands knowledge and competencies, therefore, increasing employment and career options for qualified, professional nurses.
The National League for Nursing (2012) defines “academic nursing education as the process of facilitating learning through curriculum design, teaching, evaluation, advisement, and other activities…” (The Scope of Practice for Academic Nurse Educators, page 6). Academic nurse educators are employed in a variety of settings, ranging from technical schools, colleges and universities. Nurse educators are employed in a variety of health professions education programs and settings promoting nursing professional development.
Examples include the academic nurse educators in colleges and universities. Roles and functions vary considerably and are dependent on the mission of the educational institution, type of academic programs offered, academic preparation, certification and specialization, and criteria for appointment, promotion and tenure. Clinical nurse educators are engaged in professional development and patient/family education in a variety of health care settings and services. Nurses in clinical practice, management and leadership actively mentor, frequently serve as preceptors and seek formal positions as clinical instructors, classroom or online faculty, or expert clinical faculty in community based settings, simulation and learning labs.
Additional advanced practice and doctoral education is necessary for formal roles in various education, practice and research settings, and vary by state and institution. State Board of Nursing requirements for faculty academic preparation and professional nursing practice and accreditation standards further clarify requirements. Interested individuals should carefully research hiring practices and regulatory requirements specific to your teaching career goals.