WGU Nursing Programs Event Discovery and Quality Improvement Counseling
Purpose: The Department of Nursing supports a culture of safety, professionalism, teamwork, transparency, and accountability for system effectiveness and individual performance. When events occur in the student learning process (didactic, clinical learning lab, or clinical intensive), the SBAR (Situation, Background, Assessment, and Recommendation) approach for event discovery and counseling is initiated. Events may be related to system processes or student knowledge, skills, or attitudes. See Nursing Dispositions and Code of Conduct policies).
Note: Depending on the seriousness of a given situation, direct referral to the discipline process may be warranted with the approval of the Chair of the Nursing Dispositions committee, state director and/or Chief Nursing Officer.
Step 1: Verbal Counseling: The first level of counseling consists of verbal discussions of behavioral or dispositional concerns conducted by a student’s immediate faculty representative (defined in this policy as clinical or lab instructor, program mentor, course instructor, or state director). Discussion may include factors impacting an event such as system/process factors that may have contributed to risk, minor errors in judgment, unintentional error on the part of a student, or the initial instance(s) of performance or communication issues. Verbal counseling is based on completion of the Event Discovery and Quality Improvement (EDQI) Form. This form is attached. Students receive a copy of the completed form.
Guidelines for formative verbal counseling include:
a) Feedback is given as close as possible to when an event occurs.
b) Feedback is constructive - information-specific, issue-focused, based on observations and the context in which the event occurred, and includes behavioral expectations and/or professional standards.
c) Faculty/Instructor and student discuss a plan for how to minimize the risk for and/or prevent this event in the future and an action plan with a designated timeline for completion (if applicable).
d) Identify support resources (if applicable).
e) Hold Follow-up discussions during the designated timeline, as appropriate, to facilitate student support and performance improvement.
f) If a clinical event, instructors evaluate and document resolution of the concern.
g) The EDQI form is maintained in the student’s academic record.
If, with verbal counseling conferences, the problem has not been resolved, Step 2 written counseling will occur. If deemed appropriate, the problem may warrant progression to the Nursing Dispositions committee.
Step 2: Written Counseling: Written counseling occurs when initial knowledge/skills/attitudes and/or dispositional issues have not been resolved. Written counseling is initiated by a faculty representative in consultation with the State Director of Nursing or program manager and other appropriate WGU staff. While continuing to focus on specific student performance improvement and support, written counseling is inclusive of contractual requirements. The Event Discovery and Quality Improvement Action (EDQI) form must be completed and include the following:
a) A faculty representative details in writing the student’s continuing behavioral or dispositional concerns and expectations for improvement. The faculty representative may specify components that need to be included in the student’s action plan/learning contract for remediation of the behavior.
b) A faculty representative discusses the written counseling form with the student, including review of previous verbal counseling(s) and using the constructive feedback strategies identified in Step 1.
c) After receipt of the written counseling, a student develops a written action plan/learning contract to correct the continuing areas of concern and submits the plan to the faculty member within 48 hours. Failure to submit an action plan in a timely manner may result in referral to the Dispositions committee.
d) If the problem is resolved by the end of the designated timeline, the completed EDQI form and action plan/learning contract with appropriate signatures is placed in the student’s academic record.
e) If, in the judgment of the faculty representative, the problem is still not resolved in the designated timeline, the student shall be referred to the Dispositions committee for formal disciplinary action.
Step 3: Referral to the Nursing Dispositions committee for formal disciplinary action, which may include processes consistent with the behavior guidelines found in the WGU Student Handbook.
Article Number: 20508, 2837