In all educational institutions, in-service programs should generate individual incentive, colleagueship, and professional commitment to the philosophy and objectives of the institution and its educational program. In any educational institution, such a program must be developed in the context of its unique function in the community.
To plan and implement in-service education, a faculty committee, supported by administration, determines the needs of the group; crystallizes objectives; defines criteria; plans, implements, and evaluates the program. At Presbyterian-St Luke's Hospital School of Nursing, we have attacked these problems, structured solutions, and submitted plans to the faculty for endorsement. Whether our particular techniques and specific solutions would work in other diploma schools of nursing may not be as significant as the common core of educational concepts, currieular aims, and professional background we share with other nursing educators. From the particulars presented in this article, we hope to stimulate their thought and action in this vital aspect of nursing education.
Determining the "needs" of thegroup involves immediate and long-range consideration of individual, departmental, currieular and other institutional objectives to be met. Among these, skills, knowledge, and goals assume vital and respective significance. Equating long-range and immediate goals, supplementing and sharing knowledge, identifying and developing pedagogical skills complicate the patterning of realistic and stimulating sessions.
The personnel and caliber of a committee charged with this responsibility determine not only the program's effectiveness but the climate of acceptance generating total faculty response and participation. Functioning as a standing committee of the faculty organization, our membership represents all departments. This more than token representation enables us to tap individual and disciplinary opinion, visualize specific needs, discover resources, communicate information. At PresbyterianSt. Luke's, all faculty choose committees they wish to serve on so that each committee includes interested rather than arbitrarily assigned members. In our case, a committee of six functions well because each member believes in and works toward mounting an exciting and worthwhile professional project
This departmental liaison solves a critical problem in program planning. Without identifying individuals, the committee freely discusses candid expressions of personal and technical needs and inadequacies - especially of the less experienced and minimumly prepared instructors. In this respect, our committee serves as a clearing house; for, in many instances, matters of basic teaching skills and knowledge are referred to specific departments who conduct their specialized seminars. Each faculty member knows that his individual recommendations may be expressed, respected, and acted upon. Particularly in a diploma school, such assurance safeguards free exchange of thought and pursuit of professional happiness. Unless this freedom prevails, any faculty education program will fail to fulfill its purpose- individual growth and achievement culminating in valid consensus and institutional programs.
In actuality, no program can be all things to all people nor even some things to some people all of the time. A planning committee's divining rod (necessarily bifurcated by technical and philosophical demands) always should tap the basic vein -the goals of the institution. Only in this context should a program, meeting total faculty interests and needs, be developed. With this principle in mind, we offered a series of sessions developing the theme -the craft and commitments of teaching.
To assure total faculty participation, we assigned each department chairman (nursing, professional orientation, natural science, social science, communication) an opportunity to present his curricular commitment, techniques, research - whatever would contribute to a greater understanding of the teaching and relevant patterning of the respective discipline. Within departments, faculty shaped susbtance and selected methods of presentation. At each planning session, the faculty education committee member functioned as consultant and participant in these departmental deliberations.
For the initial session, we procured an administrator from the Chicago public school system to spark enthusiasm and project basic principles inherent in the craft and art of teaching. Here at Presbyterian-St. Luke's, the administration supports our endeavor by endorsement, counsel, and funds allocated to the committee. This opening meeting, addressed by Dr. George Connolley, generated enthusiasm for and questions about the techniques and philosophy of education. (Dr. Connolley offers a graduate course in education at the University of Chicago. )
The Social Science Department capitalized on Dr. Connolley's inspirational keynoting by using the entire department to informally discuss their various courses and meaning in the curricular pattern. The Communication Department engaged a guest speaker (Professor William Haney of Northwestern University) to present and illustrate the dynamics of interpersonal communication in the clinical area. Dean Mary Kelly Mullane (University of Illinois Medical Center) shared professional views about current trends in nursing education at the meeting sponsored by the Professional Orientation Department. A member of the Natural Science Department, George Sackheim, oriented faculty to the techniques of programmed learning. The Nursing Department structured a panel presentation of the "implementation of psychiatric nursing principles in other areas of nursing instructor".
To evaluate the program, the committee prepared and circulated a simple questionnaire eliciting comment and suggestions for another year. Not all faculty responded (the forms were returned anonymously) but those who did provided valuable criticism and helpful suggestions. Positively, the group appreciated the diversity, flexibility, and uniqueness of each session. Negatively, some felt that too few participated in discussion and too many merely audited sessions. All seemed to enjoy the informality which characterized each meeting.
In evaluating the program, the committee decided that more advance and continuous publicity might promote and sustain interest. All thought that the physical setting (conference tables radiating from a central speaker's or panelists' table) catalyzed authence response and participation. The fact that a detailed continuity of topics, date, and time enabled faculty to clear calendars well in advance seemed important (All sessions were held on Wednesday afternoons reserved for that purpose ) The amenity of tea and conversation concluding the formal session perpetuated discussion, especially with guest speakers generously spending additional time with interested individuals.
This year (1963-1964), the faculty of Presbyterian-St Luke's is involved in a study of the implications of changing patterns in nursing education. We initiated this study by open discussion of the Surgeon General's Consultant Group report, "Toward Quality in Nursing". Subsequent sessions have featured spokesmen from a collegiate program, a junior college program, and the Illinois Hospital Association. In March, we plan to devote a workshop day to exploration, summation, and application of the various aspects of these changing patterns whose philosophical and pedagogical configurations have been focused for us.
Whether this scheme and substance stimulate individual thought, coUeagueship, and institutional growth remains to be seen, heard, and reported. Whatever our questionnaires ultimately reveal, the committee knows that we have exposed the faculty to combustible substance generating heat - and hopefully-light