Back to Table of Contents for the On Course I Workshop

1. Strategy: Wise Choice Process

Application: Introduction to Nursing

Educator: No Name Provided

Implementation: Teach students the Wise Choice Process and have them practice it with a partner. Then discuss with the whole class to what degree the process worked to solve their problems. Next introduce them to the steps of the Nursing Process (ADPIE): Assess, Diagnose, Plan, Implement and Evaluate. In pairs, have students compare the two processes for purpose and method. Then, in a whole class discussion, elicit the similarities of and differences between the two processes. Importantly, help students identify the purpose of these critical thinking processes: To identify a problem, design a plan for solving the problem, and evaluate the results.

2. Strategy: Professor Rogers’ Trial (Case Study)

Application: Introduction to Nursing

Educator: Nancy Cannon, Nursing Study Skills Tutor, Cecil College, MD

Implementation: The purpose of this activity is to encourage nursing students to create and work well in study groups. In preparation for starting study groups, have students read “Professor Rogers’ Trial” and make a list of the behaviors of each character (Anthony, Sylvia, and Donald) that sabotaged the group’s success. Ask students to make a list of positive ways they could respond to each character if that student were in their study group, thus making their study group more successful. Finally, have them make a list of the behaviors of their ideal study group member. Remind them of Gandhi’s famous quotation: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” Encourage them to each be the ideal study group member.

3. Strategy: Wise Choice Process

Application: Nursing & Advising

Educator: Carol S. Beneker, Academic Coordinator-Nursing, Columbus State Community College, OH

Implementation: As the Academic Coordinator, my role consists of tutor, advisor, counselor, etc. for our “at-risk” population, nursing students who are failing one or both of their required, concurrent courses. If they drop one course, they must drop the other. If they fail one course and pass the other, they do not have to repeat the course passed; however, they are then taken out of the sequence of classes for the nursing program until the failed course is offered again, usually every other quarter. This creates a lot of discord amongst the students. Often they are passing one course and failing the other and have to make a decision about which path to take before the final cut off date. They are in a dilemma because they don’t want to drop both courses only to repeat them again. I sit down with them, and we go through the Wise Choice Process. I keep a legal pad just for this situation, and I have the student write down ALL of the options because doing it themselves helps reality sink in for them. After we go through the choices in my office, I have them take the list home for a few days and add whatever they want to it. Then we discuss it again. Surprisingly, they usually make the decision to drop and go out of sequence because they don’t want a D or F on their record. Failing two classes drops you out of the program entirely at any time. So far, all the students, except for one, have understood the concept of making a wise choice. When the student does choose to drop, I try to discuss with them why they think they were unsuccessful to begin with.

4. Strategy: Changing Habits

Application: Nursing or Any Course that gives tests

Educator: No Name Provided

Implementation: The purpose of this activity is to help students discover and experience strategies to reduce test anxiety in a high risk environment such as nursing. Give students the “Changing Habits” handout and ask them to fill it out BEFORE the test is given using the following modified sentence stems: “One habit I have that helps my success on tests … One habit I have that hinders my success on tests … One new habit I would benefit from having when taking tests is …” Hold a class discussions for students to exchange what they wrote about habits. Additionally, because writing has been shown to reduce anxiety, devote a few minutes before the test to have students write about their feelings about the test. After the test, have students discuss new habits they applied to preparing for the test, how they think they did on the test compared with how they initially expected to do on the test, and what habits they will employ before, during, and after the next test.

5. Strategy: Affirmations

Application: Nursing Students. To support and encourage students as they make the transition from students to professionals.

Educator: No Name Provided

Implementation: Affirmations: For students in their last semester in the Nursing Program, have each one create an affirmation that will make them a successful, effective nurse. Have students mail their affirmations to the instructor. At the pinning ceremony one of the nursing instructors reads each student’s affirmation as they are pinned. Together the class responds, “Yes you are.”

6. Strategy: Silent Socratic Dialogue

Application: Nursing

Educator: Kathleen Lee, Nursing Faculty, Mid-State Technical College, WI

Implementation: Give each member of the class a different clinical problem. As the first step of the SSD, students write a review of the information they know from their assigned problem, as well as additional information they need to obtain. Students exchange papers, and the partner asks questions that prompt the other person to provide missing information. Upon receiving their own paper back, students add missing information if they can. Then the partners ask three specific questions in turn: “What problem have you identified? What can be done about the problem? What would you do first and why?” Each time, the students respond to one question and then return to their partners for feedback and follow-up questions.

7. Strategy: The Puzzle

Application: Clinical Nursing Course or Any Course Where Students Work in Groups

Educator: Lori Eithun, Faculty Nursing, Mid-State Technical College, WI

Implementation: The puzzle activity can be utilized as an initial activity for groups of students who will be together throughout an 8-week clinical course. Divide the group into two groups, and have each group work to complete a small puzzle. After the activity, have students reflect on what they learned about themselves and about each other in terms of the benefits and challenges that come with working together. In addition, the instructors will have the opportunity to observe the activity and make initial assessments of group members’ personalities and work styles as the clinical period begins.

8. Strategy: Draw Your Dream

Application: Nursing

Educator: Barbara Timmons, Dept. Chair, Nursing, Fox Valley Technical College, WI

Implementation: Ask first-semester nursing students to draw their dream for the Nursing Implementation Program and their life/career goals. Ask students if they wish to share their ideas with other students, and offer the option of handing their pictures in (with their names on the back) to their instructor. Instructors create a poster board of the class’s pictures. When the students move on at the end of the semester, forward their pictures to their next group of instructors, so that students always have their dreams to guide them. At graduation and the Pinning Ceremony, display the pictures as a reminder of how much they have accomplished over the two years, as well as the power of making dreams come true.

9. Strategy: Affirmations

Application: Allied Health/Nursing

Educator: Mary Burns, Faculty/Coordinator, Nursing, Washtenaw Community College, MI

Implementation: In small groups, have students identify qualities of a safe, competent, emotionally intelligent nurse. Compile all the qualities (perhaps by using clickers) vote to identify the top ten qualities. Have students choose three they need to work on, and write an affirmation using these three in the form: “I am a __________, ____________, ______________ registered nurse.” Conduct an affirmation milling using their affirmations; remind students to affirm their partners with “Yes, you are!” and respond, “I know!”

10. Strategy: Jigsaw

Application: Second year nursing students (N206 Pych. Nursing)

Educator: Cheryl Nelson, Faculty, Nursing, Allegany College of Maryland, MD

Learning Objective: Students will compare the basic concepts of 4 therapies (1. Milieu 2. Behavioral 3. cognitive 4. Psychotherapy) commonly used in mental health and identify strategies for their implementation.

Implementation: Have students form groups of four. Each student in the group will be assigned one therapy on which to become the group’s expert. Students will then work in therapy groups to identify key concepts of the therapy an strategies for applying the therapy to nursing care. Encourage students to be creative, utilize class resources, posters, AV, etc. t illustrate the concepts and strategies. Students each develop one test question based on key concepts. Students return to their original groups to compare basic concepts and strategies. Each expert will have 10 minutes to present. Use the best questions submitted by the experts on a test.

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