Health Care Nursing Faculty: A Job For Educators

One of the great advantages of pursuing a career in the healthcare industry especially nursing career is the chance to choose from wide arrays of specialties and industries to work for. Some professional nurses pursue a career in nursing because they are into helping people but found themselves enjoying jobs in the academic field. If you want to pursue a career in the healthcare industry but are somehow inclined to teaching professions, then you can pursue a career as a nursing faculty or nursing instructor.

General Job Description Of A Nursing Educator

Nurse instructors or nurse educators teach aspiring nursing students in various settings such as classroom, clinical, and the laboratory. They usually work in hospitals, nursing schools, clinics, and offices of health care professionals. Most nursing educators acquire a bachelor’s degree in nursing, have a license as a registered nurse, and has accomplished long years of work experience. Some may have even completed a graduate degree in nursing such as a doctorate or master’s degree in nursing.

So what are the jobs and duties of a nursing instructor?

  • Nursing EducatorsA nursing instructor teaches students in classrooms and clinical settings demonstrating to students and teaching students the principles and applications of biological, psychological, and physical subjects related to nursing care and practices.
  • Just like regular teachers, a nursing educator also usually supervises laboratory works, give assignments, and other common activities in a classroom and clinical setting.
  • Nursing instructors may also provide seminars and special lectures for nursing students.
  • Nursing educators also prepare and administer examinations to students to evaluate and know the nursing students’ progress.
  • They cooperate with other medical and nursing personnel in a specific institution especially in hospitals to improve teaching methods for nursing students.
  • Some even provide lectures for patients in various communities discussing essential topics like proper health practices.

Requirements To Become A Nurse Educator

To become a nurse educator, the minimum education requirement would be a Bachelor of Science in nursing or more commonly known as the BSN degree program. BSN degree programs usually require 4 years of study and completion of the program will qualify you to sit for the national licensure exam provided for aspiring registered nurses known as the NCLEX-RN or the National Council Licensure Exam Registered Nurse.

After getting your license as a registered nurse, you need to earn some work experience before you can start applying for nursing educator positions in various institutions. Some institutions would consider applicants with more than 2 years of work experience in the medical field and especially those who have work experience in a specialized work setting. However, due to the shortage of nursing educators, some schools and health care institutions are even willing to hire newly graduated and newly licensed nursing professionals especially if they have excellent academic records.

While some employers are willing to hire applicants with a bachelor’s degree and a minimal work experience, some institutions require at least a master’s degree or a doctorate degree in nursing especially in reputable nursing schools and institutions. Earning a graduate degree in nursing is a good option if you want to be promoted and want to gain advantage from other applicants.

Aside from the national license administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, a registered nurse must also comply with the state licenses required by the specific state they want to get employed as a nurse educator. Once you complete the state-required licenses for nursing educators, you can now legally work and are employed as a nurse instructor or educator.

Essential Skills Required To Become A Good Nursing Instructor

Since a nurse educator will be developing the new generations of nurses that will be serving the health care industry, it is important that these professionals are not only highly knowledgeable but also well skilled and experienced. Nursing educators must also have some leadership skills and excellent communications skills in order to effectively teach nursing students.

Career Outlook And Income Opportunities For Nurse Educators

Due to the increasing demand for nursing services, enrollment in various nursing degree programs has also increased over the years. Despite the growing nursing careers, a lot of states and countries are still experiencing nursing shortages especially in the academic field. Only few registered nursing professionals choose to become an educator. This is why most employers and health care institutions are now willing to provide better and higher compensations for aspiring nursing educators.

Income For Nurse EducatorsThe average salary of nursing educators employed in the country is $72,480 every year based on the American Association of Colleges of Nursing data. Just like expected rapid employment growth for registered nurses in the clinical setting, nursing educators can also expect great employment opportunities in the coming years especially for those with work experience and higher education background.

Nurse educators are highly in demand in various workplaces such as hospitals, technical schools, vocational schools, community colleges, universities, and various educational institutions offering nursing programs to students. Some companies even offer great benefit packages to encourage more professional nurses to choose a career in the academic field as nursing educators. Excellent benefit packages include student grants, relocation assistance, and tuition waivers.

Reasons To Pursue This Career

Only few of the registered nurses choose a career as a nursing educator thinking that other nursing professions are much better than becoming a nursing instructor. However, compared to other nursing professions and specialties, pursuing a career as a nursing instructor can actually provide you more flexibility and autonomy. If you perform research, you contribute to the advancement of nursing practice plus if your worked get published you can also gain prestige which can open more wonderful opportunities for you.

Another good reason to become a nurse educator is that you can work almost anywhere in the world since a lot of countries around the world highly need qualified nursing educators. You can even teach students who are miles away through internet and computer technologies. You basically help in shaping the future for the health care field plus you also help other people become successful in their chosen field by providing them the knowledge and skills they need through proper education and training. Aside from changing lives, the best part is that you teach what you love and earn high salary for doing the thing you love doing.

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