National League of NursingNational League of Nursing

The Voice of Nursing Education

Getting Started


Caring for the Older Adult Living in the Community

Printer-friendly version of this teaching strategy

Getting Started 

This teaching strategy focuses on the following ACE.S Essential Nursing Actions: Assess Function and Expectations, Coordinate and Manage Care, and Make Situational Decisions. The strategy enhances the students’ human flourishing, nursing judgment, professional identity, and spirit of inquiry. 

1.  The following tools can be used in a variety of settings to enhance student learning and understanding of the needs of the older adult living in the community. 

  • Concept maps are useful to assess the needs of older adults living in the community, as well as address complex chronic problems that may be occurring. Case studies foster students’ critical thinking by illustrating and contextualizing the complexities associated with older adults. This approach may be best suited for small group discussions or post-clinical debriefings/discussions. 
  • Interview of an older adult living in the community will give the student an opportunity to discuss the needs of an older adult who lives directly in this setting, rather than using an inpatient setting during an acute exacerbation. In the community setting, the student can not only interview the older adult, but can also assess the environmental needs directly, coordinate care as necessary, and discuss situational decisions with the patient and the caregiver(s). 

2.  Students should be encouraged to explore web sites such as the Try This:®  and How to Try This resources and Innovative Care Models websites for additional assessment tools and information.

Suggested Reading
Author Information