Debriefings are an important part of learning in a clinical setting. They help students process their experiences, empathize with their patients and look for places they can improve. Now, in addition to just talking about their experiences, students in population health courses at LSU Health New Orleans School of Nursing are drawing them too.
“We have done the exercise a couple times now and are making it a regular part of our post-clinical conferences.”
Ellen Beyer, DNP, MBA, PHCNS-BC, APRN
The idea came from a breakout session at a recent Baccalaureate Education Conference hosted by the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, titled More than Arts and Crafts: Engaging in Reflection During Clinical Post-Conference, which was attended by Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing Ellen Beyer, DNP, MBA, PHCNS-BC, APRN, and other faculty members.
“We really liked the idea and thought it would be a good way to help students de-stress and get them talking about their clinical experiences,” says Dr. Beyer.
Incorporating best practices and techniques learned at the conference, Dr. Beyer prompted her students with questions like, “How do you think your patient felt today?” and “How did you feel about your clinical day today?” The students were provided with colored pencils, crayons and markers, and asked to create an illustration.
“The students really enjoyed the activity,” says Dr. Beyer. “Several of them commented that it was a fun way to break the ice, and that it helped them visualize what other students experienced during their clinical visits. We have done the exercise a couple times now and are making it a regular part of our post-clinical conferences.”