Nurse Practitioners' Experiences With Role Transition: Supporting the Learning Curve Through Preceptorship

Nurse Education in Practice (01/20) Vol. 42 Pleshkyan, Viktoriya; Hussey, Leslie

A new study aimed to investigate nurse practitioners' (NPs) experiences with role transition while in a preceptorship, to inform educators and employers on how to make this transition stronger. Seven themes were highlighted by experiential analysis: transition preparation and learning; preceptorship during role transition and learning; learning to care for complex patients; learning in a clinical environment; transitioning to a greater autonomy and new responsibilities; accepting the role and identity confusion; and transition reactions. Many participants felt unprepared to practice independently and perceived a lack of adequate onboarding immediately after graduation. Meanwhile, graduates generally learned their NP role through self-instruction and by asking questions, with the latter extensively employed due to a dearth of formal preceptorship and mentors. Based on these findings, the authors recommend that "well-structured onboarding programs and post-graduation residency programs should be employed to allow for a more gradual increase in autonomy to establish NPs' safe transition to practice."

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