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Join Us as a UNC-Chapel Hill School of Nursing Preceptor!

We value the contributions of time and expertise provided by preceptors in the education of our students. As a preceptor, you help our students obtain real-life, hands-on clinical experiences while providing guidance and mentorship. The partnership between nursing school faculty, preceptors, and students is essential for educating the next generation of BSN, MSN, and DNP nurses. Preceptors are a critical member of our teaching team!

What are the benefits associated with serving as a preceptor?
    1. Opportunity to:
      • Improve your clinical, communication and teaching skills
      • Reflect on and evaluate your own practice
      • Stay current and revitalized as a health care professional
      • Shape the next generation of nursing professionals
      • serve as a role model for your teaching ability and professionalism
      • Improve your ability to be considered for promotion or advancement in your workplace
      • Experience the personal satisfaction of giving back to the health care community
    2. Access to the AHEC Digital Library and the electronic resources at the UNC-Chapel Hill Health Sciences Library (such as Up-to-date)
    3. Verification of preceptor hours for credentialing and/or licensure; for NP Preceptors: 30 precepting hours may be applied to the annual 50 hours of CE required by the NCBON
    4. Per student reimbursement provided through NC Area Health Education Center for qualified sites
    5. Invitation to apply for membership to the Alpha Alpha Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society
    6. Potential Adjunct Faculty appointment at the School of Nursing
Are you interested in  serving as a preceptor?

If you are not yet partnering with us, we invite you to share your expertise, enthusiasm and joy of teaching with our students. If you are able to help or know of someone who may be interested in precepting, please email:  Valerie Glassman, Director Clinical Support Division:

This website provides preceptor development resources to help preceptors make the most of their teaching experiences with our students and faculty. Click on any of the links for more information.

Last Update: December 2020


The BSN program implemented a new curriculum in Fall 2019. More information to follow.

Community Health Nursing for the Public’s Health (RN to MSN Nursing Program)

Prepares RN students for population-focused practice in community health nursing. Analyses and applications of selected theories, and health promotion/protection and disease prevention strategies are emphasized.


Thank you for your willingness to precept a UNC–CH School of Nursing graduate student  We hope this site will be helpful in providing an overview of the clinical needs for our MSN and DNP programs and answer questions common to our community preceptors.

For those who are considering whether to precept, we would love to have you. You will get satisfaction from helping the next generation of clinicians, the challenge of working with energetic learners, hours that can be used toward continuing education/recertification/licensure, electronic access to the AHEC Digital Library and UNC Health Sciences Library resources (including UpToDate), and appreciation from all. Some of our clinical courses qualify for AHEC payment to community preceptors. Our graduate clinical site coordinator would love to talk with you about this opportunity.

The current advanced practice areas in the graduate program include adult-gerontology primary care nurse practitioner, health care leadership/administration, pediatric nurse practitioner-primary care, family nurse practitioner, and psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner. In the nurse practitioner options, students complete a minimum of 500 clinical hours with a preceptor. The majority of clinical settings for nurse practitioner students are in primary care but may include outpatient specialty settings.

For information pertinent about our graduate practice programs, click here.


How are clinical placements arranged?
Typically, the Lead Faculty in an advanced practice area will facilitate contacts to sites/preceptors to request a clinical placement. Less often, it might be a student or course coordinator making the initial contact. After a clinician has agreed to precept, the school’s contracts administrator will work with the clinic, arranging all of the administrative details, including contracts and Health and Safety requirements.

What is expected of a preceptor?
Preceptors provide our students the opportunities to obtain real-life, hands-on primary care experiences while providing guidance and clinical expertise. We also expect preceptors to let us know when they have any questions or concerns. Preceptors can include MDs, NPs, CNMs or DOs. While students may work with more than one clinician; in general, students should be paired with a primary preceptor who can monitor the student’s progress over the course of the semester.

What is the time commitment?
Most clinical courses consist of 120 hours over a 15 week semester. For example, in the fall semester a student will need to be with the preceptor for 8 hours/week for 15 weeks. There is flexibility in the students’ schedules; this allows the preceptor to identify preferred days and/or days of the week that he/she is unavailable.

What should I expect from the NP student?
The course coordinator will provide information on course specific expectations. In general, before a student’s first clinical placement, he/she has had an opportunity in the classroom and lab to learn advanced comprehensive assessment and diagnostic reasoning skills and knowledge and skills in prevention and management of common health issues. In order for the student to practice these skills in the clinical setting, the student should quickly begin working with patients on his/her own. When you assign patients to students, first ascertain to your satisfaction the student’s level of clinical performance relative to the demands of your practice. The student is always expected to confirm all findings, diagnoses and treatment plans with you before the patient leaves your office or facility.

Will I have contact with any faculty during the student’s clinical rotation?
Prior to the start of the clinical rotation, the course coordinator will provide you with the course objectives. For each clinical course, a student is assigned a clinical faculty. The faculty will make at least one site visit. The goals of this site visit are to follow the student in his/her clinical activities and, with patient permission, observe the student providing care for one or more patients. During a visit faculty do not provide any care or act as a provider in any manner. The faculty will meet with the preceptor and student to discuss the student’s progress in clinical and identify any areas where the student may need help or guidance. Please know that faculty are available to assist you with any student questions that arise about the NP program or the student. Feel free to contact the graduate clinical site coordinator, the course coordinator or the student’s clinical faculty with any questions and concerns.

How are students evaluated during their clinical rotation?
In addition to the evaluation of the clinical faculty at the site visit, preceptors have on-going opportunities for informal assessment of student performance. In addition to this on-going assessment, the preceptor will provide a formal assessment at mid-point and at the semester’s end. Final assessment includes written evaluation on a course-provided document.

Are there any tangible benefits for precepting?
While the School of Nursing does not provide monetary payment to preceptors, the NC Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) program is able to provide preceptor payment to community providers for certain approved courses. Other tangible benefits include documentation of precepted hours to use towards recertification and license renewal and electronic access to the AHEC Digital Library and UNC Health Sciences Library resources (including UpToDate).

LEARNING MODULES focused on precepting:

Preceptors are invited to view and participate in the self-paced learning modules:

Here are some excellent resources to help you make the most of the precepting experience:

Preceptor Tool Kit (Primarily focused on BSN precepting, but much of it has relevance for precepting at any level)

Mastering the Preceptor Role: Challenges of Clinical Teaching– How to be an effective teacher while maintaining a busy clinical practice.

Teaching Strategies Used by Expert Nurse Practitioner Preceptors: A Qualitative Study

Helping Preceptors Mentor the Next Generation of Nurse Practitioners – Defining the preceptor relationship, role functions, responsibilities and clinical teaching strategies.

The One-Minute Preceptor: Shaping the Teaching Conversation – Well known teaching model that is brief, easy to learn and effective for the preceptor and student.

Cultural Competency Continuing Education Program – To help health care providers improve the quality of health care services to diverse patient populations, the Office of Minority Health offers free on-line classes with CE credits for NPs, Physicians and PAs.

In addition to the resources listed here, please see the recommendations on the Graduate or Undergraduate Preceptor’s Page

Preceptors are invited to view and participate in any of these self-paced learning modules:

“Our Nursing Preceptor Success Program includes three modules that were created because Expert Preceptors Build Expert Nurses. We spent the last three years evaluating the key elements of the new nurse experience and incorporated feedback from preceptors, new nurses and over 200 nurse leaders throughout the state! We now are able to bring you these three easy‐to‐use and affordable online modules to enhance your current strategies for professional development and workforce retention.

Module 1 – The Role of the preceptor
Module 2 – Communication in the Preceptor Role
Module 3 – The Transition Process: Assessment to Evaluation”

The Foundation for Nursing Excellence module catalog can be found here

UNC Library Resources

In appreciation of your involvement with UNC School of Nursing’s educational mission, we encourage you to take advantage of electronic access to the AHEC Digital Library and UNC Health Sciences Library resources (including UpToDate). Please email Mary Beth Schell for information on accessing this resource.

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Thank you for your interest in the UNC School of Nursing programs. If you have comments or questions, please use the form below to contact us.

Thank you for your interest in precepting UNC School of Nursing Students. So that we can determine what level/type of student will be the best fit for you and your practice, please complete this brief survey. One of our clinical site coordinators will be in touch.

Please complete the form below.

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For questions, please contact the Director of Clinical Support — Valerie Glassman at or 919.962.8985.