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Internationally Educated Nurse (IEN) Competency Assessment in Alberta Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) Workshop May 16, 2007 Shirley Meyer,

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Presentation on theme: "Internationally Educated Nurse (IEN) Competency Assessment in Alberta Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) Workshop May 16, 2007 Shirley Meyer,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Internationally Educated Nurse (IEN) Competency Assessment in Alberta Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) Workshop May 16, 2007 Shirley Meyer, RN MN Assistant Registrar

2 Role of the Regulatory Body The College & Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CARNA) is responsible for ensuring that the residents of Alberta receive:  safe,  competent, and  ethical nursing care from Registered Nurses (RNs) and Nurse Practitioners (NPs).

3 Overview  Role of Regulatory Body  Eligibility Process and Competency Assessment  What works  What we have learned  Challenges

4 Determining eligibility  Historically, eligibility for RN registration was based on comparing IEN educational preparation to educational preparation of Alberta RNs.  Assessment of credentials and educational transcripts provide only a part of the information required to determine an applicant’s eligibility for registration as a Registered Nurse

5 Determining eligibility  Alberta Health Professions Act (HPA)  Substantially Equivalent Competence (SEC) Have a combination of education, experience, practice or other qualifications, that demonstrates the competence required for registration as a regulated member (HPA 28(2)(c))

6 Entry to Practice Competencies  The specific knowledge, skills, judgment and interpersonal attributes required of a new registered nurse graduate who is entering the workforce for the first time.  28 competencies  Measured using the SEC Assessment process administered at Mt. Royal College in Calgary

7 Eligibility Process  If unable to determine from applicant documents that possesses ‘substantially equivalent competencies’ expected of newly graduated Alberta RNs, will: Determine type(s) of SEC Assessment required Refer applicant to the Mt. Royal College IEN Assessment Centre  Applicant arranges appointment  Once assessment completed, report sent directly to CARNA

8 Eligibility Process  SEC Assessment report will identify if applicant: Meets all competencies Meets many/some but not all competencies  Eligibility decision determined from assessment of all evidence (including SEC assessment results)  If questions arise from assessment results, direct contact is made with the IEN Assessment Centre to discuss and verify.  Occasionally applicant may be sent for further specialty SEC assessment if required.

9 Educational Interventions  Decision made to: Approve registration Defer registration Deny registration  Defer: If competency gaps are identified, applicant may be required to complete educational interventions to address the gaps

10  Types of educational interventions determined by: The appropriate activity that would address competency gaps in the most timely and cost- effective manner for IEN  Successful completion of interventions is considered evidence of meeting the competency requirement.

11 What we have seen with SEC Assessment…  Not eligible  Eligible but competency difficulties arose in workplace  Eligible  Met all competencies and was eligible  Competency gaps identified and completed remediation. Eligible and more confident in workplace  Could not meet competencies – deemed ineligible Transcripts & Credentials onlySEC Assessment

12 What works  Commitment of both parties (Mt. Royal and CARNA) to a collaborative and ongoing relationship  Shared goals: Objective, unbiased assessment of the applicant’s ability to meet Entry to Practice Competencies Public receives safe, competent, ethical nursing care Maintenance of evidence-based SEC assessment tool Open, transparent, concurrent process evaluation with timely, responsive changes Facilitate IEN success on CRNE and in workplace Respectful and fair relationship/interactions with applicants

13 What works…  The collaboration between Mt. Royal College IEN Assessment Centre, CARNA, and Ministries of Health & Wellness and Advanced Education  All focused on providing frameworks and infrastructure to: Ensure safe, competent nursing care to public Support timely assessments Support IENs and facilitate their success

14 What we have learned…  Importance of English Language fluency prior to the assessment  The need for open, transparent information to applicants: The SEC Assessment is an opportunity to demonstrate knowledge, skills and abilities The SEC Assessment process Understanding that identified educational activities must be completed as a requirement for eligibility

15 What we have learned…  The need for regular, frequent meetings between both CARNA and the IEN Assessment Centre to ensure timely discussion of issues and joint problem-solving  The SEC Assessment process is ongoing and iterative in its development

16 What we have learned…  Critical to discuss and understand the assumptions, roles and processes of each partner: Regulatory vs. Educational Purpose of the SEC assessment Information re: applicant to SEC assessment Centre by CARNA Information to/from applicant prior and following assessment Operational and funding processes Process flow mapping, streamlining of processes Capacity and scalability issues Other activities and pressures in each environment

17 What we have learned…  Having an objective assessment of an individual’s competencies is important and valuable but,  It is equally important and essential to have appropriate and accessible remedial interventions available to address the identified gaps One is incomplete without the other!

18 Educational Interventions  Discovered that existing educational programs/courses did not meet the specific educational needs of IENs who had been through a SEC Assessment  Either content was not applicable to competency gap or there was redundant content

19 Educational Interventions  Specific curriculum had to be developed to provide educational interventions that addressed the specific competency gaps Offerings are tailored to the specific IEN competency requirements Because content was developed in alignment with PLAR Project, have confidence that remediation meets competency needs.

20 Challenges  Assessment and educational accessibility to IENs in all locations Alberta Off shore  Funding assistance for IENs  Awareness and understanding of length of time process can take

21 But…  The process provides an opportunity for applicants to ‘show what they know’  The process is objective, consistent and fair  The process helps ensure that registered nurses who are granted eligibility for registration are competent to provide safe and ethical nursing care to the public.

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