Personal Philosophy: From your readings about teaching and learning theories, develop and discuss your personal philosophy of teaching in nursing.
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A variety of authors, in addition to my personal experiences, have contributed to my philosophy of learning and teaching, an amalgam of humanist and feminist influences. As a humanist, I believe that the motivation to learn is driven by the learner’s needs, a positive self-concept, and a desire to grow. As a feminist, I believe that learning is enhanced when heart and mind are connected. Through a combination of these philosophies, I have conceptualized a personal learning and teaching philosophy that promotes what Grauerholz refers to as “deep learning,” leading to “profound meaningful and lasting shifts in cognition, attitudes, emotions, and values.” (Grauerholz, 2001, pg. 44)
Learning takes place on multiple levels, through multiple ways of knowing, which are unique to each individual and must be attended to by the teacher. Learning is a personal transaction, both between the learner and facilitator and between the learner and the material being learned. As a humanist and feminist, I believe my role as educator is to encourage curiosity, promote a positive self-concept, respect individuality and freedom of choice, and, most importantly, to be a facilitator, rather than an authority. My role is to promote a partnership in learning, fostering a non-judgmental atmosphere of mutual respect and trust.
As a humanistic feminist educator, my instructional strategies are grounded in an appreciation of the various learning and personality styles of my students. They include a diversity of didactic methods, group projects, and peer mentoring. As an educator, my goal is to always include the five elements of humanistic teaching described by Chou et al – availability to my students, a caring teacher/student relationship, authenticity in my interactions, empowerment of my students’ learning, and a transformative curriculum which cultivates and liberates my students. (Chou, Tang, Teng, & Yen, 2003, pp. 59-60)
Belenky, M. F., Clinchy, B. M., Goldberger, N. R., & Tarule, J. M. (1997). Women’s ways of
knowing: The development of self, voice, and mind (Tenth Anniversary Edition). New York: Basic Books.
Braungart, M. M., & Braungart, R. G. (2003). Applying learning theories to healthcare practice. In S. B. Bastable (Ed.), Nurse as educator: Principles of teaching and learning for nursing practice (2nd ed., pp. 43-71). Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.
Chou, S., Tang, F., Teng, Y., & Yen, M. (2003). Faculty’s perceptions of humanisitic teaching in nursing baccalaureate programs. Journal of Nursing Research, 11(1), 57-63.
Grauerholz, L. (2001, Spring). Teaching holistically to achieve deep learning. College Teaching, 49(2), 44-51.
Ohlson, M. M., (1997, March). Humanistic learning; Journal of Humanistic Education & Development, 35(3), 130-134.
The clinical learning experience that I recall most clearly took place in a small community hospital where I had a group of 8 third semester associate degree nursing students. One of our patients required Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis (CAPD), a procedure that I personally had not done in a few years. The primary nurse for that patient was a graduate of my nursing program and she had never done the procedure, either in school or as a clinician. The student had also not done CAPD, nor had she had that content yet during that semester. So this was going to be a re-learning experience for me and a learning experience for the other two people. To add to the mix, the patient herself was quite proficient at the procedure but due to her hospitalization was unable to perform it on her own. So this increased the anxiety for my student even more!
The motivation for this learning experience was two-fold. First and foremost, to accomplish the procedure correctly and on time. Second, to have the student and/or the staff nurse perform as much of the procedure as possible. All of us were motivated by the desire to safely perform the task and feel comfortable to do the procedure the next time.
My learning theory was based on constructivism, in which “learners create personal meaning from new information. In other words, they attempt to create a comfortable cognitive niche for the new information based on what they believe to be real and true in the world.”(SUO 2014) I needed to make sure both the student and primary nurse were fully comfortable with the procedure.
My delivery of the content was a form peer coaching, in which “feedback provided by a trusted mentor is specific and directed at helping the protégé improve a particular performance or behavior. In that regard, it is collegial and not competitive, professional and not social, dynamic and not static.” (SUO 2014) I had the student pull the policy and procedure from the files and both she and the nurse read it thoroughly. After gathering the equipment, the three of us entered the room. The nurse explained to the patient that she and the student would be performing the procedure while I read the steps out loud. This was satisfactory for the patient, so we proceeded and had a successful outcome, not only for the patient, but for the student and the nurse. I was able to provide them with feedback later in a private setting, and both expressed a greater degree of comfort with the procedure.
South University. Nursing 4028: Week 1: Learning theories continued. (2014). Retrieved from http://myeclassonline.com/
South University. Nursing 4028: Week 1: Principles of learning. (2104). Retrieved from http://myeclassonline.com/