Key Elements to Developing a Preceptor Program

J Contin Educ Nurs. 2017 Nov 1;48(11):508-511. doi: 10.3928/00220124-20171017-08.


Background: With competition from so many nursing programs seeking clinical sites and numerous nurses entering the health care industry, it is imperative to have a nurse preceptor program in health care institutions.

Method: This article attempts to identify the essential components of a preceptor program by reviewing the literature, surveying RNs to identify curriculum, and suggesting an evidence-based preceptor program of value.

Results: Although there is much in the published literature and books about preceptors' roles and responsibilities, few references are available about how to start a preceptor program and program components. A total of 402 RNs with a baccalaureate nursing degree (or higher) were surveyed at a health care system. One hundred ninety-seven surveys were completed (49% response rate) to identify education topics, format, and time of delivery.

Conclusion: The development and implementation of a preceptor program is vital for the success of nurse training and retention to provide quality care. J Contin Nurs Educ. 2017;48(11):508-511.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Curriculum*
  • Education, Nursing / organization & administration*
  • Evidence-Based Nursing / education*
  • Humans
  • Preceptorship / organization & administration*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Surveys and Questionnaires