Online Nursing Doctoral Students Visit Campus to Practice Skills in Sim Labs

One Doctor of Nursing Practice student, right, uses another student as a model in her demonstration of chest tube insertions.
Photo by Heidi Wells

One Doctor of Nursing Practice student, right, uses another student as a model in her demonstration of chest tube insertions.

The Eleanor Mann School of Nursing at the University of Arkansas offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree for nurses that allows them to take all of their coursework online. However, it is the best of two worlds for students, who also come to the campus in Fayetteville about once a semester to work on various skills in the high-fidelity simulation labs.

Students enrolled in the DNP program spent the day Feb. 22 in two of the labs working on advanced health assessment and critical care procedures. In advanced health assessment, they took turns conducting comprehensive head-to-toe physical exams on each other, working down a checklist that included examining the eyes, ears, nose and throat, listening to the heart, lungs and abdomen, as well as an extensive neuromuscular exam.

In the critical care skills lab, they used the lab mannequins to perform arterial line insertions, chest tube insertions, central venous line insertions, lumbar punctures, intubation, and wound debridement competencies.

The students here last week are in the family nurse practitioner concentration and the adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner concentration. Nursing school faculty observed them in the labs as part of their competencies in order to sit for board certification.

The DNP program offers two levels of entry, one for nurses with a bachelor's degree and one for nurses with a master's degree. More information is available online. The online courses are delivered through the Global Campus.

Clinical practicum hours are arranged in the student's local area with qualified preceptors who supervise them. The degree program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.


Heidi S. Wells, director of communications
College of Education and Health Professions

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