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The NLN Designates Three New Centers of Excellence in Nursing Education


Three Nursing Programs and Faculty Cited for Extraordinary Accomplishments

September 30, 2006

New York, NY.... The 2006 - 2009 Centers of Excellence (COE) were announced today at the NLNs annual Education Summit. The University of Oklahoma College of Nursing, Indiana University School of Nursing, and Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing were acknowledged for achieving this coveted designation.

Now in its third year, the COE program recognizes schools of nursing that have achieved a level of excellence in a designated area; demonstrated sustained, evidence-based, and substantive innovation in that area; and have a proven commitment to continuous quality improvement. "The COE program was initiated to publicly acknowledge nursing schools that distinguish themselves by outstanding achievement in the promotion of excellence in nursing education" said Dr. Ruth Corcoran, CEO of the National League for Nursing.

Centers of Excellence in Nursing Education 2006 - 2009

The University of Oklahoma achieved Center of Excellence status for its accomplishments in Creating Environments that Promote Student Learning and Professional Development. The College of Nursing builds its teaching/learning environment on caring, critical thinking, communication, and citizenship. These elements are evident in both the baccalaureate and masters programs, as faculty provide flexibility and choice in order to empower the more than 1,000 nursing students to individualize their learning, develop their creativity, and assume responsibility for providing leadership in nursing and health care. Student diversity, community outreach efforts, and strong partnerships with a wide range of community agencies are effective in developing what the College of Nursing refers to as "the next generation of health care leaders."

The COE designation for Creating Environments that Advance the Pedagogical Expertise of Faculty was awarded to Indiana University for its School of Nursing "corridor" campuses, which enroll nearly 1,500 students in associate degree, baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral programs. This group of more than 100 full-time faculty are nationally and internationally recognized for their expertise in developing creative, interactive pedagogies that promote excellence in nursing education, including web-based learning, problem-based learning, narrative pedagogy, and use of simulation technology. As the result of a clear plan for ongoing faculty development, the Indiana University School of Nursing has developed an empowering, collaborative, and creative learning environment for both students and faculty.

At Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing in Quincy, IL, faculty have successfully Created an Environment that Advances the Science of Nursing Education. A small school that offers a baccalaureate program, approximately 300 nursing students are taught by 14 full-time faculty who have created an environment where teaching, evaluation, and other educational practices are evidence-based; and where all faculty are contributing to the advancement of the science of nursing education. As a result of their participation in a national research study using narrative pedagogy, the faculty have changed the way they teach, the way they relate to and interact with students, the structures and processes that are in place for getting the work done, and the value they place on evidence-based teaching practices.

In keeping with the NLN mission to continually advance quality nursing education, throughout the three years that schools carry the COE designation, they are expected to be available to other schools seeking to move their own programs toward distinction. Summed up NLN chief program officer Dr. Terry Valiga, "Through the Centers of Excellence designation, nursings most exciting programs are made known to the entire academic community and thus able to inspire other schools to strive for excellence."

Editors and reporters: For interview opportunities, please contact NLN chief communications officer, Karen R. Klestzick, at 212-812-0376,