NLN Publishes Vision for Post-Baccalaureate Nursing Education. Master's Education Valid and Valued Means to Prepare Nurses for Entry into Advanced Nursing Practice

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Calling for the development and implementation of new models of master's and doctoral education that embrace diverse pathways to advanced nursing practice, the National League for Nursing released the latest entry in the NLN Vision Series. As affirmed by nursing education leaders from 16 schools at the NLN April 2011 NLN Roundtable on Post-Baccalaureate Education, multiple options for advanced nursing practice will increase our nation's potential to meet health care needs.

Calling for the development and implementation of new models of master's and doctoral education that embrace diverse pathways to advanced nursing practice, the National League for Nursing today released the latest entry in the NLN Vision Series. Said NLN CEO Dr. Beverly Malone, "As affirmed by nursing education leaders from 16 schools at the April 21, 2011 NLN Roundtable on Post-Baccalaureate Education, multiple options for advanced nursing practice will increase our nation's potential to meet health care needs."

"A Vision for Post-Baccalaureate Nursing Education" acknowledges the urgency for action in the context of the current health care reform agenda, asking that "post-baccalaureate nursing education programs focus on local and regional health care needs, on access to quality, cost-effective, and sustainable health care, and on developing a health care system that addresses the needs of our rapidly diversifying population."

The data are clear and persuasive; the quality of master's-prepared nurse practitioner practice has been demonstrated in multiple studies over the past several decades. The nursing leaders comprising the NLN Roundtable agreed that as the nursing profession moves toward the redesigning of both nursing education and clinical practice, it is imperative that we ensure that there is an adequate nursing workforce to meet the needs of American society.

"In addition," said Dr. Malone, "It is a matter of urgency to include nurse educator preparation in both master's and doctoral education. In fact, Educating Nurses: A Call for Radical Transformation, issued by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching in early 2010, clearly recommends that all master's and doctoral nursing programs include teacher education courses and experience."

Summed up NLN president Cathleen Shultz, PhD, RN, CNE, FAAN, "In the face of our ongoing nursing shortage and the need for a patient-centered, community-responsive health care system, how can we exclude nurses from a variety of entry points for both prelicensure and postlicensure programs? Advanced nursing practice must be flexible and adaptable, we cannot meet the public's needs with just one approach."

"A Vision for Post-Baccalaureate Nursing Education" concludes with recommendations for nursing education programs, for the nursing profession, and for the National League for Nursing. To read the complete text, visit http://www.nln.org/aboutnln/livingdocuments/nln_vision.htm.

Reporters/Editors: For more information and interview opportunities, please contact Karen R. Klestzick, chief communications officer, at 212-812-0376.

Dedicated to excellence in nursing, the National League for Nursing is the premier organization for nurse faculty and leaders in nursing education, offering professional development, networking opportunities, testing services, nursing research grants, and public policy initiatives to its 35,000 individual and 1,200 institutional members.

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KAREN KLESTZICK

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