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Top 5 Reasons to Attend Nursing Education Conferences

October 16, 2023

By Sim2Grow Staff

Professional development activities are required for nursing faculty seeking academic promotion…we all know this, but finding the time and energy to build out your portfolio is challenging and, let’s face it, not something that most of us look forward to. Between daily teaching responsibilities, time spent in clinical and the lab, remediating with students, and endless faculty meetings, the last thing we want to do is educate ourselves. But teaching in an ever-changing field like nursing means that faculty have to stay up to date with the best practices in nursing and the best practices in teaching. This includes everything from new clinical practice standards and evidence-based practice to the implementation of digital and virtual teaching tools into your curriculum.

One way you can stay current and meet professional development milestones is by attending regional and national nursing education conferences. Annually, there are hundreds of options to select from, so strategically planning which conferences to attend is an important first step. Whether you're a dean, faculty member, administrator, researcher, or student, attending educational conferences helps you connect with colleagues and hear from an interesting variety of thought leaders in nursing. 

Top 5 Reasons to Attend Nursing Education Conferences:

  1. Networking: Conferences provide an excellent opportunity to meet and network with other professionals in your field. You can exchange ideas, learn about new trends and technologies, and develop relationships that can help you in your career.
  2. Learning: Conferences offer a wide range of educational opportunities, including keynote speeches, workshops, and panel discussions. You can learn about the latest research, best practices, and new developments in your field.
  3. Career development: Attending conferences can help you develop new skills and knowledge that can enhance your career opportunities. You may also have the chance to showcase your work or research, which can help you gain recognition and advance your career.
  4. Exposure: Conferences can provide exposure to new ideas, technologies, and trends that you may not have encountered otherwise. This exposure can help you stay current and relevant in your field.
  5. Giving back: Sharing your expertise with others by submitting an abstract for a poster presentation or lecture helps increase the body of knowledge.  Although a little intimidating the first few times, it does become easier to put yourself out there. Others, especially those who are new to the field, are very appreciative of your willingness to share.

Overall, attending professional nursing conferences can be a valuable investment in your career. There are many nursing education conferences held around the world every year, and the best ones to attend will depend on your specific interests and needs. However, here are five nursing education conferences that are widely recognized as being among the best:

  1. National League for Nursing (NLN) Education Summit: This conference is held annually by the NLN, which is a leading organization for nursing education. The conference focuses on topics such as curriculum development, assessment and evaluation, and leadership in nursing education.
  2. International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning (INACSL) Conference: This conference is focused on the use of simulation in nursing education. It offers workshops, presentations, and networking opportunities for educators who use simulation to train nursing students.
  3. Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) Nursing Education Research Conference: This conference is focused on nursing education research and provides an opportunity for nursing faculty to present and learn about the latest research in nursing education.
  4. Nurse Educator Conference: This conference is organized by the National Organization for Associate Degree Nursing (NOADN) and is focused on topics related to associate degree nursing education. It provides an opportunity for nursing faculty to share best practices, network, and learn about new trends and developments in associate degree nursing education.
  5. American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Annual Conference: This conference brings together nursing faculty, deans, and other leaders in nursing education to discuss current issues and trends in nursing education. It provides opportunities for networking, professional development, and learning about new developments in nursing education.

Again, this is just a small sample of the many nursing education conferences available. It's important to research different conferences and choose the ones that best fit your interests and needs.