APN Professional Development Plan

APN Professional Development Plan

Students who have completed their nursing undergraduate studies often undergo a
transition process from being nursing practitioner (NP) to advanced practice nurse (APN)
especially within the first year or practice. By definition, a nursing practitioner refers to a nurse
who is currently undertaking his or her masters’ education in nursing while an advanced practice
nurse must have a master’s degree in nursing and successful completed an APRN specialization
exam. Evidently, the roles played by RNs and NPs are quite different and this alteration
distinguishes the former from the latter. Students often try to achieve the most successful
transition though there is a limited amount of research that defines the factors involved in
attaining a successful transition. The changes concerning the transition not only involve the
knowledge that one has acquired but also the scope of practice that one has. More often, RN tend
to assume that with prior experience as a registered nurse will result in smoother clinical
rotations and ultimately have an easier transition in becoming APNs. Nonetheless, the scope of
practice of NP and APN are entirely different, which places an experienced nursing practitioner
in a position to experience challenges while transitioning to this new role. This process also
involves identify areas where one can get work upon completion of studies. Therefore, it is
beneficial for nursing practitioners to conduct a professional development plan, which aids in the
transformation process to become successful advanced practice nurses and to acquire
employment in recognized institutions.
APN Scope of Practice
The scopes of practice In Florida, the congress facilitated the enactment of the Florida
Nurse Practice Act under chapter 464 within the Florida Statutes in order to ensure that every

nursing practitioner within the region acquires the minimum requirements in facilitating safe
practice. According to section 464.003, “any person licensed in this state to practice professional
nursing and certified in advanced or specialized nursing practice, including certified registered
nurse anesthetists, certified nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners” (Florida Board of Nursing,
2016). In relation to advanced registered nursing practitioners, the state of Florida identifies that
apart from obtaining the nursing professional certificate, APRNs need to obtain a post basic
specialized training, education and experience as well as acquire certification from the Board of
Nursing to carry out advanced degrees of nursing acts (Wyckoff, Houghton & LePage, 2013).
The education requirements of advanced practice nurses involved having at least a
Master’s Degree within nursing before undertaking the specialized exams that qualifies one to be
identified as an APN. Certification and licensure are equally significant aspects in identifying
whether an individual can be recognized as an APN. According to the state of Florida, an APN
needs to acquire the right documentation prior to beginning their practice in health and other
related institutions (Buppert & R2 Library (Online service), 2015). The certification of clinical
nurse specialists including advanced practice nurses is acquired via the American Nurses
Credential Center (ANCC) while those who have specialized in midwifery acquire their
certification from the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB) (Buppert & R2 Library
(Online service), 2015). On the other hand, APNs who have specialized in anesthetist acquire
their certification from the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse
Anesthetist (NBCRNA). Currently, the Clinical Nurse Specialists is considered as part of APNs
and they obtain their licensure from Florida Nurse Practice. These boards serve the purpose of
assessing an APN by identifying if they have the required education qualifications as well as the

specific requirements for them to take practice as an APN. Having the required licenses allows
the trained APN to carry out the stipulated roles by the state.
Contrary to the RNs, APNs have specific roles that they carry out while providing care to
patients. Typically, the duties of APNs vary depending on the specialization of the nurse. Nurse
anesthetists focus primarily in surgical environments while nurse midwives work on the
healthcare of women. According to the Florida Administrative Code Rule 64B9-4.010(1) , “An
Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner shall only perform medical acts of diagnosis, treatment,
and operation pursuant to a protocol between the ARNP and a Florida-licensed medical doctor,
osteopathic physician, or dentist” (Florida Board of Nursing, 2016). In relation to prescribing
medications, not all APNs have the authority to prescribe drugs depending on the specialization
such as a nurse anesthetist cannot prescribe medication in the midwifery section (MidlevelU,
2013). Furthermore, APNs are capable of working in virtually any healthcare environment
including private practice clinics, long-term care institutions and hospitals. They are also capable
of working in healthcare policy settings or educational settings.
Nevertheless, APNs in Florida experience several barriers or limitations while offering
care to patients (Hader, 2011). For instance, they are allowed to prescribe various medications
but they are restricted from prescribing controlled substances. Furthermore, APNs are often
unable to obtain the medical staff privileges offered in health institutions including hospitals
(Wyckoff, Houghton & LePage, 2013). In relation to professional liability, APRNs are subject to
malpractice on insurance requirements whereas physicians are allowed to go free without facing
the consequences of their actions (Wyckoff, Houghton & LePage, 2013). In addition, there are
other factors, which facilitate the limitations that APNs face. These include the fact that most
insurance plans such as Medicaid and HMOs do not offer a direct means of paying for the

services offered by APNs (Wyckoff, Houghton & LePage, 2013). Moreover, the laws that
govern APN practice are out-of-date and they need to be updated and revised in order to reflect
the current training, education and experience. The presence of such barriers limits the APNs
from practicing their acquired knowledge and skills in health institutions.

Personal Assessment

Prior to beginning the practice as an APN, it is ideal for an individual to reflect on the
personal accomplishments, challenges, experiences, talents, expectations and learning needs.
Evidently, honest appraisals require self-knowledge. Self-reflection is also important since it can
be useful when done in partnership with other professional reflection activities. For instance,
professional nurses such as CNSs often advise colleagues, families and patients to save some
time for self-evaluation. The process of evaluating the self is accomplished using the Benner’s
Novice to Expert model (Hamric, Hanson, Tracy & O’Grady, 2014). This model works based on
the principle that a person’s perception regarding certain aspects often change as he or she gains
more experience. The personal assessment will mostly focus on the strengths, weaknesses,
objectives and goals.
I have several short term goals that I aim at achieving by the end of the next year my first
short term goal includes completing my Masters of Science studies in Nursing from the
University of Central Florida by August 2016. Once I have completed my Master’s degree
program, I aim at locating an advanced nursing position as a trained CNS. Before the completion
of the studies, I aim at working part time at a medical clinic in Central Florida. Thereafter, I aim
at beginning my Doctorate studies in Nursing at the University of Central Florida in this year’s
fall where I expect to graduate in the following year. The achievement of these goals can only be
facilitated by hard work on my part and having a clear understanding of what I aim at achieving.

In relation to my career, I want to place more focus on CNS. Being a complex yet interesting
field, I believe that my work will help me in improving the life of others and that of their families
by providing quality care to patients. It also involves considering the flexibility, which is
inherent in the role of a CNS and evaluating the most and least appealing aspects.
However, in the course of becoming a proficient CNS, I exhibit certain weaknesses.
These include the personal fear of taking risks and fearing to take up new tasks because of the
fear of failure. Evidently, failing to challenge the self affects one’s work as a CNS since I will
not be able to fully work as expected and offer good quality services as expected. Nonetheless,
these weaknesses can be overcome by dealing with them one at time. One can employ other
strategies that counter them. For instance, in cases where the routine is not appealing while
working on different projects, the most efficient approach is to deal with systems issues and take
risks that require quick change sounds such as a CNS role involving focusing on data-driven
systems, six-sigma organizations or short term projects. In addition, while dealing with stressful
situations, the adoption of three strategic moves helps to lessen the stressful effect. This involves
getting a clear understanding of the root of the experienced stress, identifying factors that propel
the stress and finally identifying ways of eliminating the stress such as focusing on other issue in
other cases. Therefore, it is clear that I am at stage four since I focus on situations as a whole
rather than in smaller segments.

Networking and Marketing Strategies

Many nursing organizations both locally and internationally are experiencing a decline in
membership. This trend is often related to certain aspects. The professional organizations offer
nurses with the opportunities to develop their professional networks and enhance their clinical
expertise as well as appraising their knowledge concerning both international and local issues.

Some of the organizations include the American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA),
American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN), Oncology Nursing Society (ONS),
Association of perioperative Registered Nurses (AORN) and the Association of Rehabilitation
Nurses (ARN) among many others (Online Nurse Practitioner Programs.com, 2016). These
organizations help nurses to create connections and networks within the nursing industry. In
relation to getting employment opportunities, certain organizations become handy because they
offer advertisements relating to such. For instance, the American Association of NPs is a
comprehensive organization since apart from offering employment opportunities for nurses it
provides them with ways of becoming more involved with their careers (Online Nurse
Practitioner Programs.com, 2016). The NP Jobs site also offers employment opportunities
though it focuses primarily on experienced oncology nurses (Online Nurse Practitioner
Programs.com, 2016). The site mainly offers both local and international information regarding
several employment opportunities. The American Nursing Association is also another
organization that helps APNs to expand their knowledge regarding diverse fields and offers them
job opportunities (Online Nurse Practitioner Programs.com, 2016). Through such organizations,
APNs are capable of expanding their knowledge and territory in the nursing field and acquire a
deeper perspective concerning their role as APNs while getting channels of accessing
employment at the same time.

Curriculum Vitae

Name, credentials
Home Address:
Work Address: (if desired)

Email Address:
Education: Bachelor of Science in Nursing
 Degree Graduation date, Chamberlain College of Nursing
Professional Employment: (list most recent nursing position first)
 Dates of employment Employer Position title: brief description of responsibilities and
Licensure and Certifications:
 List licenses License number State(s) where qualified to practice List
certifications Certification number Credentialing body Dates certification is valid
Professional Honors and Recognition: (list most recent first)
 Professional and community awards, scholarships, honorary degrees, fellowship and/or prizes
Name of the award Presenting organization Date Reason for the award
Research/Grant History:
 Research fellowships Master’s theses Doctoral dissertations Grants (do not list a project if
funding was denied)
Lectures, Courses, and Presentations: (may include presentations given to colleagues,
healthcare professionals, or the community)
 List of names of course/lecture/presentations Dates given
Professional Service:
 Peer review groups/grant study sections Journal service: (served as a reviewer for a journal)
o Dates of service Journal name
Professional organizations:

o Names of organizations in which current membership is held Dates of membership Offices
held Committees served in each organization
Consultative service:
o Names of organizations where salaried consulting work was provided Address of the
organization Type of consulting work Dates
Organizational service:
o Dates Committees and task forces Role on the committee (i.e., member or chairperson) If
appropriate, note any major accomplishment of the committee
Hospital boards and committees
Public/Community Service:
 Community agency where volunteer work was completed Type of service (e.g., parish
nursing, fundraising, educational sessions to non-nursing groups) Population served Date


The transition from a nursing practitioner to an advance nursing practitioner involves a
complex yet exciting process that a nurse undergoes upon completion of their master’s program
in nursing. In order to have a full understanding of the process, a nurse should be able to
comprehend the various aspects involved in this transformation. This includes having a broad
understanding of the scope of practice of APNs, which varies considerably from that of NPs. The
role of the nurse transforms and comprehending what they should expect helps in preparing
nurses to become better practitioners. In addition, it is beneficial for one to conduct a personal
assessment in order to identify whether he or she is ready to work as an APN. Finally,
identifying the most appropriate areas of finding employment is efficient in helping a student to

acquire a job upon completion of studies. The curriculum vitae help in identifying the various
stages that an individual has achieved in becoming an efficient APN both nationally and



Buppert, C., & R2 Library (Online service). (2015). Nurse practitioner’s business practice and
legal guide. Burlington: Jones & Barlett Learning.