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What makes a good nursing lecturer?

  • Comments (2)

A while ago I spoke of the importance of a good relationship between you and your mentor but the relationship between you and your lecturers is just as important.

Having to sit in lectures for most of the week, it soon becomes clear what makes a good lecturer.

Simply having an in-depth knowledge of the subject is not enough.

In my opinion it takes a mixture of authority and discipline with a dash of showmanship. Some of the best lectures I have experienced have been on the driest of subjects but they have been conveyed with such passion as to make it impossible not to listen.

One lecture that I can particularly remember was delivered by a mental health nurse during my first year. He came in, chastised a few people for being late and then preceded to give us an anecdote about how his car had been clamped the night before and the stressful time he had in confronting the clamper. It felt more like standup than an academic lecture. We all felt at ease and instantly warmed to this scatty and eccentric lecturer.

As students, we have to spend hours each week in lecture halls up and down the country.

The subjects we are exposed to may be depressing, serious or dry but that doesn’t mean that the delivery has to be as well. Other lecturers at my university create great relationships and rapport with their students and make the process of learning enjoyable and effective.

What do you think makes a good lecturer? Do you have any favourites?

  • Comments (2)

Readers' comments (2)

  • A good lecturer grabs the attention of his/her audience right from the start - and holds onto it.

    Used judiciously, good shownmanship is highly effective but taken to excess tends to be counter-productive as attention focuses on the lecturer at the expense of the content of the lecture. Clear delivery at the right pace c. good acoustic arrangements is essential. Humour when - and only when - appropriate, aids the presentation; equally, gravity reinforces the seriousness and importance of aspects of the subject to which it applies.

    Above all, rigid structuring of the lecture is required (if lecturers can't be academically orientated, how can they expect students to be?). If these criteria are fulfilled, it's down to the audience to derive as much benefit as possible from the lecture.

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  • Being tech savvy helps. When they drag in the overhead projector it immediately turns me off. It's 2012. As nurses, we have to keep up with best practice. As educators, as should they. Sitting squinting at some handwritten notes over a neatly typed powerpoint presentation just makes learning unnecessarily more difficult.

    Also, keeping to the point. Yes, additional information is fantastic, but I'd rather my lecturers kept to the point and directed people to places where they can learn more if they want to rather than "you don't need to know this but I thought I'd include it..." - then when it comes to revising it makes life that bit simpler.

    Oh, and if they remember there's more to the class than the front row, that's always nice. Not everyone wants to sit front and centre, doesn't mean we don't want to learn or be included!

    Finally, I'd say the person being passionate and generally 'nice' and easy to speak to/get in touch with. Lecturers at my University are really approachable and supportive, improves the overall learning experience and above all helps if you have issues with the course or placement.

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