Undergraduate Education Toolkit Background

In August of 2014 the American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA) Board of Directors charged the Undergraduate Branch of the Education Council with identifying the essential Psychiatric Mental Health (PMH) nursing content pertinent in undergraduate nursing curricula, needed to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to respond to the mental health needs of clients, regardless of setting.  To that end the group is charged to provide faculty in undergraduate nursing programs with teaching resources to deliver needed PMH Nursing content.

As an initial step in this process the Undergraduate Branch of the APNA Educational Council conducted a cross walk between the recently published APNA/ANA Scope and Standards of Practice of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing (2014) and the APNA Essentials of Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing in the BSN Curriculum (2008).  The result of this exercise is that the 2014 Scope and Standards content have been aligned with the Core Nursing Content for teaching within the PMH Essentials document.  The thirteen Core Nursing Content areas required to be taught within the undergraduate curriculum were then distilled and developed into an education toolkit containing resources and materials to assist anyone who had to teach PMH content.

 In particular the toolkit contains teaching exemplars from the following 13 Specific Core Nursing Content areas:

  • Growth and Development
  • Neurobiological Basis of Care Practices
  • Pharmacotherapeutics and basic principles of Pharmacology
  • Communication Theory and Interpersonal Skills
  • Clinical Decision Making
  • Patient Care Roles
  • Health Care Settings
  • Cultural, Ethnic and Spiritual Concepts
  • Health Promotion and Illness Prevention
  • Concepts of Chronic Illness
  • Ethical and legal Principles
  • Vulnerable Populations
  • Nursing Research
The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is accredited with distinction as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.