Academic journal article Nursing and Health Care Perspectives

NLNAC Frequently Asked Questions

Academic journal article Nursing and Health Care Perspectives

NLNAC Frequently Asked Questions

Article excerpt

What is NLNAC's position about the verification of prior learning?

In response to questions about whether having a valid and current RN license can -- or should -- be used for verification of prior learning at the lower division undergraduate level, the NLNAC inclination is to say -- not necessarily. We do not believe that the first one to two years of all types of basic nursing education programs provide graduates with knowledge equivalent to the first two years provided in a valid baccalaureate nursing program. Nor do we believe it is a barrier to the first professional degree to require that students demonstrate the ability to use previous learning in developing the critical thinking skills needed for a college or university education.

A repertoire of critical thinking skills allows examination of both simple and complex solutions in nurses' day-to-day responsibilities. Such is the basis for reflective nursing practice. In the absence of the essential knowledge gained in lower division college education, it is not possible to automatically predict that necessary knowledge has been captured, nor to articulate specifically and clearly what that knowledge conveys or what it contributes to the development of a reflective practitioner.

These statements presume that the reflective practitioner possess various layers of understanding:

* A specialized identity.

* The capability to cognitively deconstruct and explicate critical tasks.

* Sufficient mental flexibility to recognize the inadequate flexibility of our minds and the language we use to represent our thinking.

* Appreciation of the huge difficulty inherent in the fact that learning is not linear. …

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