From staff nurse to nurse consultant: Continuing professional development part 12: keeping evidence
If you have ever been involved in the selection and interviewing of people wanting to become nurses then you will know one of the standard questions asked is, why do you want to be a nurse? I must have asked that question hundreds of times and no one has ever given me the answer, ‘I like doing paperwork and keeping records.’
Nursing is a practice-based profession which, as such, attracts people who are practical and people-focused. While we acknowledge the importance of clinical record keeping and often stay on at work after our shift to make sure our patient records are up-to-date, we rarely find the same commitment, time and energy for our own records relating to our continuing professional development (CPD).
Soon after I qualified as a nurse I undertook two different types of CPD. One was a part-time taught diploma, which had lectures and examinations validated by the University of London. The second involved being a scribe and non-participant observer for 12 months in a weekly psychotherapy group run by a clinical psychotherapist, where my role was to take notes and discuss various interactions with the therapist after the group finished. Although I learnt a lot from both of these experiences, the only one I have any evidence of is the post-registration diploma, and this evidence enabled me to become a nursing lecturer.
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