Q&A with Kristina Backwell - Course Coordinator, Master of Advanced Nursing

26 Sep 2018

Kristina is the course coordinator for Master of Advanced Nursing. Kristina is a Registered Nursing and has a number of degrees under her belt including Bachelor of Science (Hons) Nursing, Advanced Certificate in Critical Care Nursing and a Master of Health Practioner (Health Professional Education). 

What’s the best part about your job?

I love sharing my experiences from the different clinical areas in which I have worked and it is also fantastic learning about some of the diverse specialty areas in which the students practice. We have students who are working across Australia and Internationally and it is such a privilege to be able to work with these practitioners to further their education.

What do you hope to pass on to the next generation of Nurses?

I hope to pass on a passion for lifelong learning. Nurses have an important and ever expending role in healthcare and ultimately, becoming the best practitioner allows us to provide optimum care for our patients.

Who inpires you?

As a junior nurse starting my career, I didn't know in which direction my professional life would lead, I certainly didn't think I would be teaching other nurses, on the other side of the world, in Australia. All the positive experiences I have had as a nurse have led me towards a career in education. On reflection, these positive experiences came from working with colleagues who delivered excellent care, were kind to other staff members (and themselves) and never failed to teach what they had learnt.

What are some of the new teaching methods (or new technologies) you are bringing to the classroom?

The courses offered in the Master of Advanced Nursing at UQ are extremely flexible so are ideal for post-graduate students who are almost always working and often have family or other commitments in addition to completing their studies.

The online courses use some of the aspects of the flipped learning approach, exploring concepts, engaging in meaningful activities and then applying the concepts covered. This approach encourages self-motivated learners and allows flexibility.

The courses offer interactive experiences through use of discussion boards and forums which provides contact with myself as a teacher and with other students. The design of the courses really take into account the different learning preferences of students which is so important as we have students at many different stages of their career, working in a variety of areas.

Why should nurses continue to study in areas like leadership and education?

It's such a exciting time to be a nurse! Nursing is a rapidly changing profession and to meet the challenges in clinical leadership and the changes in healthcare we need innovative and educated leaders who can inspire future generations of nurses.