Response need for below discussion:

When deciding on curriculum changes/advancements or any new program/change, it is important to focus on both internal and external factors as well as do a needs assessment. These factors can either be positive or negative, and some factors faculty can control while others are out of the faculty’s control. Internal factors are those that are within the institution/clinic etc. and external factors are those that influence the change or development but are external (Keating & DeBoor, 2018). “In any dynamic organization, curriculum change is not a choice but a requirement” (Billings & Halstead, 2016, p. 73). Changes in curriculum or always needed to keep up to date with changes in the community, town, country, and world (Billings & Halstead, 2016).

This week’s post is going to focus on the external factor: population demographics and trends. Before implementing any changes, it is important to know the characteristics of the population. It is important to know who the potential students will be and who the students will be taking care of once they graduate. Knowing whether there are adult learners or younger learners can help with curriculum advancements. Ethnicity, financial resources, and faculty availability are crucial to curriculum development (Keating & DeBoor, 2018).

When I worked out west in a college in downtown Calgary, it was very clear based on patient demographics that ethnicity and financial resources were key factors to keep in mind when developing curriculum. Many of the students first language were not English, they had immigrated to Canada, and many had financial struggles. A lot of the students were nurses, pharmacists and even physicians in their home country. Cultural sensitivity will need to be taken into consideration with all changes/developments in the curriculum (Billings & Halstead, 2016). If students can’t afford to go to school or don’t have access to financial resources, they may not perform to their highest standard in school. I had students who came to clinical exhausted and who I had to send home for safety reasons. These students had to work multiple jobs to get by and provide for their family. A lot of these students also needed help with their English, and therefore the college had to take this into mind and make sure the resources were available for English tutoring. Calgary, in general, had a lot of minorities, and therefore these are the patients that the students will be taking care of when they graduate.

The demographics of our population are rapidly shifting and “by 2030 it is estimated people age 65 and older will represent almost 20% of the total U.S. population” (Billings & Halstead, 2016, p.74). This means nurses need to be trained in chronic care and end of life care (Billings & Halstead, 2016). There will also be an increased need for home care. These statistics help nursing faculty to adjust the curriculum appropriately to make sure the newest generation of nurses is trained to help this population (University of Saint Mary, 2019).

 

References

Billings, D.M., & Halstead, J.A. (2016). Teaching in nursing: A guide for faculty (5th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier.

Keating, S.B., & DeBoor, S.S. (Ed.). (2018). Curriculum development and evaluation in nursing (4th ed.). New York, NY: Springer.

University of Saint Mary. (2019). The impact of the aging population on nursing. Retrieved from https://online.stmary.edu/msn/resources/impact-of-aging-population-on-nursing

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