Clinical Scholarship and Adult Learning Theory: A Role for the DNP in Nursing Education

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Preparation for successful nursing educational outcomes begins with a solid foundation in learning theory. Two adult instructional theorists provide excellent frameworks that can be used to prepare students for licensure and practice. Gagné’s Hierarchy of Knowledge outlines nine events that progress from foundational knowledge to higher levels of learning. Keller’s ARCS Model of Motivational Design centers the learning process on attention, relevance, confidence, and satisfaction. A comparison of these theorists is presented as a framework to maximize the nurse educator’s effectiveness in the classroom and clinical setting. It is argued that the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree offers the skills required for effective teaching, exceeding the program offerings of a master’s program.


PMID: 24187735