ACEN Everywhere: Transitioning to Virtual Learning 

ACEN Everywhere: Transitioning to Virtual Learning

By: Nell Ard, PhD, RN, CNE, ANEF

Have you considered attending a Self-Study Forum or a Program Administrator Workshop? Do you have a report to submit to the ACEN related to the program’s compliance with the ACEN Standards and Criteria, which may be a Candidacy Presentation, a Self-Study Report, a Focused Visit Report, or a Follow-Up Report? Are you a new faculty member and want a better understanding of nursing accreditation as well as the ACEN Standards and Criteria? If so, the ACEN will have professional development opportunities that can be accessed anytime and everywhere.

For several years, nurse administrators and faculty have been asking to have access to the Self-Study Forum and Program Administrator’s Workshop online. Providing professional development online has been requested secondary to travel cost, time, and a desire for all faculty to participate. While the Directors at the ACEN had been discussing this possibility for some time, COVID-19 with its impact on travel as well as the need for social distancing has expedited the process.

In Fall 2020, there will be access to two new professional development opportunities provided by the ACEN through eCourses. Both professional development eCourses will be in an online, asynchronous, self-paced learning format within the iSpringLearn learning management system (LMS), and each eCourse will be composed of multiple modules.

The first eCourse, Understanding and Applying the ACEN Standards and Criteria, will assist the participant to have a better understanding of the ACEN’s Standards and Criteria. The eCourse will also provide the participant information about essential elements to include in any report being submitted to the ACEN. Based upon feedback received, the eCourse will also have modules specific to both graduate- and undergraduate-level programs. This eCourse will be designed for all faculty and administrators whether they are preparing a report for the ACEN, learning about the Standards and Criteria as a new faculty member, or refreshing their knowledge of the Standards and Criteria.

The second eCourse, Effectively Leading an ACEN-Accredited Program, will assist individuals who currently serve in a leadership role, officially or unofficially, or who aspire to serve in a leadership role to gain a better understanding of the ACEN. The eCourse will provide information regarding roles of leaders within an ACEN-accredited program, information about administrative capacity and leading faculty/students, overseeing curriculum development and resources, as well as empowering the faculty and program leaders to embrace outcomes assessment. The eCourse will provide information about selected ACEN policies as well as describing the various resources available.

Individuals will be able to purchase one or both professional development eCourses as a package. Participants will have access to the eCourses for 30 calendar days from the date of purchase; the LMS will allow the purchaser to access an eCourse multiple times during that time period. Completion of all the modules within an eCourse will provide the participant with Continuing Nursing Education (CNE) units upon completion of the evaluation module at the end of the respective eCourse. Group pricing will be available for a single nursing education unit (NEU) that has multiple individuals registering for the same eCourse; only the individual who has purchased the eCourse and completes it will receive the CNEs applied to each. More information is available from the ACEN Everywhere FAQs.