Teaching Clinical Reasoning Piece by Piece: A Clinical Reasoning Concept-Based Learning Method

J Nurs Educ. 2018 Dec 1;57(12):727-735. doi: 10.3928/01484834-20181119-05.


Background: Recent discourse generates a more thorough understanding of what clinical reasoning entails. Although numerous strategies prioritize clinical reasoning development, teaching and evaluating the thinking involved in clinical reasoning remains a struggle for nurse educators, particularly regarding clinical education.

Method: In response, the author developed a concept-based clinical reasoning teaching method with weekly themes, lessons, and learning activities adapted from Tanner's clinical judgment model and Lasater's Clinical Judgment Rubric.

Results: The method offers an organized, consistent approach to teaching and learning clinical reasoning, with multiple opportunities for student reflection, instructor guidance, and discussing clinical reasoning concepts. Clinical education became transformed for both the nurse educator and nursing students as clinical reasoning became a visible part of students' budding nursing practice.

Conclusion: Nurse faculty must ensure future nurses are prepared to think-inaction. The clinical reasoning teaching method offers one potential solution. [J Nurs Educ. 2018;57(12):727-735.].

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Clinical Decision-Making / methods*
  • Education, Nursing, Baccalaureate / methods*
  • Educational Measurement / methods
  • Humans
  • Problem Solving*
  • Schools, Nursing
  • Students, Nursing / psychology*