The Importance of Precepting

The University of Minnesota's School of Nursing values you as preceptors. You are essential to our students' clinical learning - without your experience, knowledge, and commitment, clinical education could not exist. Our students also recognize your importance and value.

The following thoughts reflect that highly valued preceptor roles and qualities that we have identified in student surveys, faculty discussions, and current research.

Why you are important to students

  • Introduction to clinical setting
  • Real world daily life of nurse
  • Socialization to nurse role
  • Integration of knowledge into practice
  • Feedback on progress
  • Role models

Preceptor qualities valued by students

  • Helpful, empathic, caring, warm
  • Humorous, flexible, fair
  • Dependable, consistent
  • Enthusiastic, motivated
  • Respectful, Willing to work with beginners
  • Enjoy teaching
  • Commitment to the student
  • Interested in continued learning
  • Involved in agency and community
  • Good role model
  • Has respect of peers
  • Able to deal with conflict
  • Good communication skills

Criteria used for the selection of preceptors

Preceptor Ranking

  • Ability to give/receive constructive criticism
  • Clinical competence
  • Knowledge of objectives
  • Adequate staffing
  • Motivation
  • Self-confidence/assertiveness
  • Flexibility
  • Communication skills
  • Professionalism
  • Workload expectations
  • Knowledge of course plan
  • Assignment consistency
  • Attitude toward teaching/learning compatibility
  • Knowledge of the preceptoring process

Student Ranking

  • Knowledge of the preceptoring process
  • Compatibility
  • Attitude toward teaching/learning
  • Assignment consistency
  • Knowledge of the course plan
  • Workload expectations
  • Professionalism
  • Communication skills
  • Flexibility
  • Self-confidence/assertiveness
  • Motivation
  • Knowledge of objectives
  • Adequate staffing
  • Clinical competence
  • Ability to give/receive constructive criticism

The University of Minnesota School of Nursing also recognizes that learning is dynamic, and students must also come to their clinical experiences with skill sets that promotes learning. What do you need from the student?

The following describe what the School of Nursing suggests that you should expect from the student.

Student responsibilities

  • Clear communication
  • Professional behavior
  • Familiarity with practice guidelines
  • Commitment to human health
  • Preparation for clinical
  • Tracking clinical experiences
  • Paperwork

Student communication

  • Orientation to site
  • Clinical Scheduling
  • Contact clients
  • Mid/end clinical evaluation
  • Changes in scheduling
  • Concerns/needs

As University of Minnesota Nursing faculty, we are strongly committed to promoting a positive teaching experience for our preceptors. We want you to feel successful and satisfied with your teaching experience.