Nursing Education: Evaluation and Testing

Describe the testing process, preparation, assembling, and administration; its importance for students’ success and providing a positive learning environment

Prior to developing a test, a teacher should detect the learning objectives and base the assessment in accordance with them. The appropriate type of evaluation should be chosen. Whereas some knowledge could be evaluated through “true or false” questions, assessing, other skills might require a more detailed answer in the form of essays or paper (Oermann, & Gaberson, 2014, p. 5). A teacher must make sure that students are aware of the expectations regarding the test. To thoroughly evaluate the competencies of students, the exam should contain questions on both theoretical and practical knowledge. The results must show whether a student is capable of analyzing real patient care situations, think critically, and predict the possible outcomes.

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A test should be administered in such a way that all the students had equal conditions, sufficient time, and the absence of the possibility to cheat. The teacher scores the test according to the number of correct answers and makes sure that the evaluation is fair.

A properly developed test would provide an accurate understanding of the student’s progress and emphasize the areas that need to be improved. Timely and useful feedback from a teacher would guide the students through their learning process and make them more confident about their potential.

What process do you think is most effective for providing feedback to students in clinical situations?

The most efficient way to provide feedback is through constant communication between a teacher and a student. A competent clinical teacher always talks about his or her expectations from the students, is aware of the students’ objectives and needs, provides guidance and assistance in challenging issues. The teacher must be available for any student to approach an individual problem. The teacher provides appropriate and valuable feedback to the entire group and each student personally. A professional educator is always respectful while explaining the mistakes of the students. He or she teaches the learners to reflect on their performance and evaluate their own achievements. A good teacher is free of prejudice and is fair in the assessment.

The other good source of feedback is tests and exams. Usually, the results can precisely measure the level of knowledge and highlight strengths and weaknesses.

What is the value of clinical education for nursing students?

Clinical training helps to acquire practical skills that could not be developed during the lectures. The capabilities that are obtained through clinical teaching include “cognitive, psychomotor, and affective domains” (Oermann, & Gaberson, 2014, p. 25). The students are able to learn how to think and reason critically (Chan, 2013). They have a chance to participate and gain experience in real patient care. The learning process is organized by a faculty teacher in a real healthcare facility. The students are involved in the process of examination, collecting information, analyzing it, and making decisions. They regularly communicate with the patients and learn how to meet their needs and provide the best services. They get a good impression of the working environment, learn to cooperate with their colleagues, and communicate with patients’ families (Billings, & Halstead, 2015). Clinical learning allows developing people skills, time, and conflict management.

The students learn how to come up with the best solution in a short time and during emotionally stressful situations. They acquire important humanistic values of nursing and get a better understanding of their future career opportunities.

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Describe some methods of recording the observation in clinical nursing education, their implementation, and importance

Observation of the students’ performance helps to evaluate their success regarding the development of the expected knowledge and skills. This type of evaluation is implemented during the process of clinical learning and before the tests. The teacher can record his or her observations in various forms such as “anecdotal notes, checklists, and rating scales” (Oermann, & Gaberson, 2014, p. 120). The teacher is constantly monitoring the progress of his or her students and provides feedback where necessary. It is important to check that the student is moving in the right direction in his or her learning objectives. Evaluating the performance before the test gives the opportunity for students to prepare properly for the future assessment and make the best out of their clinical learning experience.

Creating a 10 Point Exam to Measure Learning

Let us consider to presume that the learning objectives are the following:

  • Outline the pathophysiological changes that occur in the development of heart failure.
  • Describe the nursing and medical management of the patient who presents with heart failure.
  • Create an individualized plan of care for the individual experiencing heart failure to maintain a quality of life and decrease exacerbations.

The first objective implies some specific and definite symptoms. The knowledge of such symptoms could be proved by answering a series of true/false questions (2 points)

Answering the second question a student might consider several approaches so that a multiple-choice test would be appropriate (3 points).

The last assignment requires profound knowledge covering the entire course, critical thinking skills, and experience of communicating with real patients. The best form of answer would be an essay with a maximum score of 5 points.

Discuss the following article

Lovrić, R., Prlić, N., Zec, D., Pušeljić, S., & Žvanut, B. (2015). Students’ assessment and self-assessment of nursing clinical faculty competencies. Important feedback in clinical education? Nurse Educator, 40(5), pp. E1-E5.

The article aims at discovering the alterations between the assessment of the clinical faculty competency and the self-assessment of the faculty. The authors claim that the comparison of the results of such assessments can show valuable data about clinical education at the facility. The scholars emphasize that the purpose of the clinical faculty is both to enhance the knowledge and skills of a student and to promote efficient relationships with students. Self-assessment is important to review and analyze the faculty’s performance and discover what is it to be improved. The quality of clinical teaching is beneficial for students and the entire facility.

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The authors investigate some studies regarding clinical learning. The outcomes of the research shows significant variance between the assessment by the students and the self-assessment of a faculty. The students tend to rate the competency of the faculty members higher than the members evaluate themselves. The authors argue that both types of assessments provide useful material for the further improvement of nursing education.

Do you think certification is an appropriate goal for a nurse educator? Why?

Certification is evidence of the professionalism of any specialist. Getting the certification would be a significant benefit for a nurse educator as it represents the proof of competencies, excellent leadership skills, interpersonal skills, and academic knowledge. Not all the nurse educators are eligible for certification and certain criteria should be met by the applicants. The credentials would imply that the nurse has a strong educational background, is capable of performing healthcare services according to the highest standards, and had at least two years of experience in clinical teaching (CNE candidate handbook, 2016). A certification proves that a nurse educator possesses the necessary clinical knowledge and skills required for teaching young professionals (Nursing professional development, 2016). CNE Certification differentiates academic nursing education as a “specialty area of practice” and enhances the existing qualifications of the applicant (CNE candidate handbook, 2016, p. 2). The credential implies one’s recognition as a professional and allows to proceed in one’s career.


Billings, D. M., & Halstead, J. A. (2015). Teaching in nursing: A guide for faculty. Elsevier Health Sciences.

Chan, Z. C. (2013). A systematic review of critical thinking in nursing education. Nurse Education Today, 33(3), 236-240.

CNE candidate handbook. (2016). National League for Nursing Certification. Carbondale, IL.

Lovrić, R., Prlić, N., Zec, D., Pušeljić, S., & Žvanut, B. (2015). Students’ assessment and self-assessment of nursing clinical faculty competencies. Important feedback in clinical education? Nurse Educator, 40(5), pp. E1-E5.

Nursing professional development. (2016). ANCC. Web.

Oermann, M. H., & Gaberson, K. B. (2014). Evaluation and testing in nursing education. (4th Edition). New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company, LLC.

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