Selection and Use of Preceptors for Specialty Roles

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Selection and Use of Preceptors for Specialty Roles Subsection: 6.1.4
Section 6.0 - Facilities and Resources Originating Date: October 1988
Responsible Reviewing Agency:
Professional Graduate Nursing Affairs Committee

Final Reviewing:
Executive Council
Revised: January 1995
Revised: April 1999
Revised: September 2002
Reviewed: February 2004
Revised: October 2008
Revised: July 2012
Revised: April 2017
Revised: November 2022 (changes)


A preceptor is an APRN, PA, MD, DO, MSN, MBA, MHA, or other identified expert with appropriate educational background who has agreed to assume negotiated responsibility for a student’s clinical experience.

  1. Students in professional graduate nursing programs, excluding post-masters DNP students, are required to complete clinical practicums in order meet certification requirements
  2. A faculty member is responsible for the following:
    1. Preceptor orientation and evaluation, which should include the following:
      1. An overview of the roles and responsibilities of preceptors, faculty and students within the course
      2. Specific preceptor responsibilities
      3. Methods of clinical evaluation of students by faculty and preceptors.
      4. Goals and objectives for the clinical experience
      5. Process of resolution of potential/actual problems
      6. Completion of semester course evaluation forms documenting preceptor’s credentials and other required information
      7. Student and faculty evaluation of preceptor
    2. Guiding the student clinical experience, which includes facilitating, monitoring, and evaluating the student’s learning through periodic conferences and/or site visits with the student and preceptor.
  3. Criteria for Preceptors:
    1. For MSN students, professionals with an advanced degree appropriate to the specialty with at least one year experience; possessing appropriate certification as required; and identified as positive professional role models by agency and/or faculty.
    2. Expectations of all preceptors:
      1. Review semester objectives and goals to facilitate clinical learning
      2. Review daily objectives to be discussed at the beginning of each clinical day
      3. Create a learning environment for the student and facilitate the critical thinking skills required of a student
      4. Complete the Preceptor Credentials form yearly and the Clinical Preceptor Assessment of Student Performance form.
    3. Expectations of preceptors for APRN students:
      1. Listen to the student’s case presentation on each patient
      2. Provide feedback about assessments, differential diagnosis, problem lists and proposed plans of care
      3. See patients with the student
      4. Supervise the student on all new procedures
      5. Recheck all abnormal examination findings identified by the student and evaluate the student’s management plans for these problems
      6. Always be present in the clinical area during the student’s experience, and name a qualified substitute if you must leave the clinic
      7. Review all student entries in the patient’s health/medical records
    4. Expectations of Preceptors for LEAD/Nursing Executive students:
      1. Facilitate student’s skill in completing an organizational assessment
      2. Facilitate student’s development, implementation and evaluation of a systems project.
      3. Engage student in organizational meetings and follow up to share decision-making related to specific agenda items.
      4. Dialogue on-going conversations with student related to organizational activities including operations, strategic initiatives, management duties and human resources.

The preceptor has a right to ask that the student be placed in another learning environment if problems arise that cannot be resolved.