Journal of Professional Nursing

The Role Of The Lecturer In The Preceptor Model Of Clinical Teaching  

Lyn Dyson, RGON, MA(Hons) Senior Lecturer, Division of Nursing, University of Auckland

Reference:  Dyson, L. (2000). The role of the lecturer in the preceptor model of clinical teaching. Nursing Praxis in New Zealand, (16)3, 16-24.


Preceptorship models of clinical teaching are becoming increasingly popular in undergraduate nursing education. According to the literature the role of the lecturer is very unclear in this model of clinical teaching. This article reports on a descriptive study undertaken within a school of nursing where the author was formerly employed. The study explored the role of the lecturer. The findings demonstrate the educational orientation of the lecturer role and also highlight the tension that continues to exist between the world of education and the world of practice.  

Preceptorship, clinical teaching

In 1996 the school of nursing piloted, and subsequently introduced, a preceptor model of clinical teaching in the undergraduate programme. The change was made in response to the increasing comment, nationally, that new graduates were having difficulty making the transition to practice (Stodart, 1992). Commonly preceptor programmes have been adopted to reduce the ‘reality shock’ (Kramer, 1974) that new graduates experience as they adjust to the reality of the workforce. Formal involvement of clinical staff as preceptors in student education prior to registration is thought to be beneficial. Preceptorship is defined by Chickerella and Lutz (1981, p.102) as “an individual teaching/learning method in which each student is assigned to a particular preceptor ... so that she can experience day to day practice with a role model and resource person immediately available within the clinical setting”.   

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