What Makes Personal Support Worker (PSW) Instructors Role Models?

November 1st, 2016 / By Sue Symonds Registered Nurse [Reg Nurse], Diploma in LTCSMPSW Instructor/ PSW Faculty Head

PSW instructors set examples for the students they are instructing, both in the classroom and in the clinical setting. Their professionalism, adherence to dress code, preparedness for the class – whether in classroom or clinical setting – and punctuality illustrate some of the qualities the students must have in order to succeed in the workplace.


female instructor in front of class of adult students

By seeing themselves through the eyes of the students, instructors can adapt lesson plans and share their experiences to enhance the students’ learning opportunities.


The instructors must be able to see themselves through the eyes of the students and adapt the lesson plans to enhance the learning opportunities of the students. Therefore it is important very early on in the course to determine the learning styles of the students and plan the lessons accordingly so the students have engaging learning experiences.

It is also important that the instructors share their experiences as Registered Nurses and Registered Practical Nurses in the workplace which give examples of points they are trying to teach. Most students learn best from practical examples rather than reading about it in a text book or looking at a power point presentation.

Students learning to be employable PSWs need to have good problem solving, time management skills, communication skills and be flexible. The instructors model these traits so that the students learn these skills are necessary in the workplace.

At triOS College, the PSW instructors come from a variety of backgrounds and have been trained in a variety of skill sets. Some instructors have worked in acute care hospitals doing medical surgical nursing, obstetrics, emergency and mental health nursing. Others have worked in Occupational health and on the IV team.

Many have community experience working for agencies meeting health care needs of clients in the home such as working for a company that meets the incontinence needs of clients, working with the handicapped and doing industrial nursing. Others have worked in long term centres as Administrators, Directors of Care, Nursing Supervisors and In-service Educators. The instructors have all taken continuing education courses in their particular area of work above and beyond their RN or RPN diploma. Some of these courses include Rehabilitation nursing, Palliative Care, and adult education principles. Other instructors have served on advisory committees for District Health Council and College of Nurses of Ontario.

Through the instructor’s examples, they bring a wealth of knowledge to the classroom/clinical setting and are willing to share their experiences with their students. Instructors are called on to pass the baton [the knowledge they have learned] so that the students can benefit and be well prepared for their career ahead.

The students coming to triOS College for their PSW program will be well equipped to meet the job expectations and be job ready when it is time to enter the workforce at the completion of their program.



Visit triOS College’s Personal Support Worker program page to learn more.