FAMU School of Nursing Re-accreditation Visit Scheduled

April 19, 2022
FAMU School of Nursing Students
FAMU School of Nursing Re-accreditation Visit Scheduled

Florida A&M University School of Nursing (SON) is preparing for an Accreditation Commission for Education (ACEN) re-accreditation visit Wednesday, April 20 to Thursday, April 21.

The targeted day-and-a-half visit is designed for the ACEN team to review standard 6, which focuses on student learning outcomes and National Council Licensure Examinations (NCLEX) success, said Dean Shelley Johnson, Ed.D. The previous ACEN visit took place in 2018, when the SON met requirements in all other standards.

Since she was hired in fall 2020, Johnson, faculty and staff have focused on improving first-time licensure scores for SON graduates by adding student support services, revising and implementing the curriculum, strengthening infrastructure and enhancing faculty development offerings.

“When students come into the School of Nursing, they enter a rigorous program,” Johnson said. “They will have to work extremely hard. Our grading criteria is set. Students must meet the minimum requirements to move forward. Basic competencies must be met, as we are preparing nurses to protect and save lives.”

Nursing Students in ClassFAMU School of Nursing students in class. (credit: Glenn Beil, FAMU Office of Communications)

Among the key initiatives is the introduction of semester skills refreshers, addition of intensive content reviews, and an End-of-Program Living Learning Community (EPLLC). The EPLLC enables graduating SON students to stay on campus while they review content, and practice for the NCLEX by working with a review expert and SON faculty. The students also engage in Virtual Assessment Technical Institute (VATI) with coaches.  These students then take and pass the VATI Predictor examination. The VATI Predictor test is a good indicator of future NCLEX success if taken within six to eight weeks, Johnson said.

This is the second cohort that will undergo this initiative. The first cohort was delayed in the fall because of the Omicron virus, Johnson said. Results are expected later this month.

In addition, the SON, has been covering the cost of the Board of Nursing registration fees and the cost of the exam, which is about $230.

“Some of the School of Nursing graduates were delaying taking the test because they couldn’t afford it,” Johnson said. “The longer the delay, the more likely they are to fail. We are trying to remove that barrier.”

She credits the Division of Academic Affairs, Division of Students Affairs for room and board, the Title III Office and the Division of University Advancement for financing to operate the EPLLC.

Prior to entering the undergraduate, pre-licensure nursing programs students must be prepared. Students must focus their studies on English comprehension, math and sciences, particularly anatomy, physiology, and chemistry. These subjects are evaluated as part of the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS), which was added to the admissions requirements in the 2021 academic year. Students must attain a score of proficiency in all subject areas to be admitted to the five-semester nursing program. Only the top 50 students are accepted into the program.