Module 8: The Art & Science of Performance Evaluation

The ability to objectively and comprehensively evaluate a preceptée is key to a successful orientation plan and process.  This module will build upon the content provided in previous learning modules by incorporating the guiding principles and applying the principles to performance assessment and evaluation.  Nursing decision making involved in the delivery of patient care is a complex process and strategies for guiding preceptées to utilize clinical reasoning and critical thinking is included.  Factors to incorporate when assessing performance and guidance on communication techniques to promote preceptée development are included. The content of this module is presented within the context of a Healthy Work Environment.

Release Date:
June 2022

Expiration Date:
June 2025

Target Audience

This activity is intended for Registered Nurses assuming the preceptor role, and Clinical Nurse Educators working in partnership with their preceptors.

In the context of this course, a clinical educator means a registered nurse who teaches in the clinical setting, including the preceptor, clinical faculty, clinical nurse specialist, nurse practice specialist, professional development specialist, and others.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this activity, participants will be able to:

1. Examine best practices to utilize in supporting the preceptée in the development of decision making skills.

2. Provide the preceptée with clear actionable steps to follow to develop both clinical reasoning and critical thinking skills. 

3. Appreciate the components of performance evaluation that support the successful transition of the preceptée to his or her role.

Additional Information

Provided by: 

The Norman Knight Nursing Center     

Please visit our website at

Course summary
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Clinical Informatics Specialist, Franklin Memorial Hospital

Taffy is a Clinical Informatics Specialist at Franklin Memorial Hospital and is involved in the implementation of a new electronic health record.  A long-time clinical nurse educator, including experience at University of New England's nursing program, Taffy continues to facilitate clinical and leadership education.  She has been a registered nurse for over 30 years and worked in emergency medicine, outpatient clinics and as a nurse manager of Surgical Services, Outpatient Clinics/Oncology and Medical-Surgical units. She started her nursing career at Mass. General in orthopedics.

Her interests lie in the science behind learning, as well as creating online learning. Taffy has developed an online Charge Nurse program with participation from acute care and long-term care facilities and has designed numerous online modules using Articulate Storyline including the Maine Nurse Preceptor Education Program and MOTIVATE oral health online modules, which included working with subject matter experts.  She has presented at the Association of Nurses in Professional Development (ANPD) 2016 annual conference with Carole MacKenzie on Best Practices in Developing a Statewide Nursing Preceptor Education Program using Evidence-Based Practice and in 2014 on Barriers to Using Web Tools in Instructional Design and the creation of the top ten web tools list for instructional design. She also designed an online module for ANPD's Frontline Leader-Charge Nurse Program.

Taffy is a member of the Association of Nurses in Professional Development, Organization of Maine Nurse Executives-Nursing Leaders of Maine, Association of Talent Development and past member on the University of Maine at Farmington institutional review board.

Taffy is a graduate of Salem State College (now University) and completed a M.S.N. from Western Governor's University. She has completed graduate courses in Methods of Online Learning and Foundations of Instructional Design.

Taffeney "Taffy" Davis, MSN, RN, NPD-BC (Reviewed and Revised, 2018)
Taffeney "Taffy" Davis, MSN, RN, NPD-BC & Erin Soucy, PhD, RN (Original Author, 2016)

Mass General Brigham designates this activity for 4.00 ANCC contact hours. Nurses should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


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