Become an Innovative Online Nurse Educator

Assignment Spotlight: Conflict Resolution in Patient Care

Mar 05, 2024

Conflict resolution is an essential skill for nurses, as they frequently encounter challenging situations that require effective communication and empathy. As online college nurse educators, we play a pivotal role in equipping our students with the tools and strategies to navigate and resolve conflicts with patients in a compassionate and professional manner. In today's Assignment Spotlight, we will explore a single, impactful assignment that focuses on developing conflict resolution skills in nursing students. By incorporating this assignment into your online courses, you can empower your students to handle conflicts with patients with confidence and sensitivity. Let's delve into this innovative assignment together!

The objective of this assignment is to enhance students' ability to resolve conflicts with patients by utilizing effective communication strategies, empathy, and active listening.

Assignment Description:
In this assignment, students will engage in a simulated conflict resolution scenario with a virtual patient. They will be tasked with resolving the conflict by applying key conflict resolution principles, such as empathy, understanding, and collaboration. The assignment will be conducted in the following steps:

Step 1: Setting the Stage
Introduce the assignment and provide students with background information on conflict resolution and its importance in nursing practice. Explain the significance of maintaining a patient-centered approach during conflict resolution.

Step 2: Virtual Patient Scenario
Create a virtual patient scenario that involves a conflict commonly encountered in healthcare settings, such as a disagreement about treatment options, communication breakdown, or differing expectations. Develop the scenario to be interactive, allowing students to engage in dialogue with the virtual patient.

Step 3: Conflict Resolution Plan
Ask students to develop a conflict resolution plan outlining the steps they would take to address the conflict with the virtual patient. Encourage them to consider the principles of effective communication, active listening, empathy, and professionalism. The plan should include strategies for de-escalating tensions, understanding the patient's perspective, and finding mutually agreeable solutions.

Step 4: Simulation and Reflection
Using a virtual simulation platform or video-based role-play, students will engage in the conflict resolution scenario with the virtual patient. After the simulation, ask students to reflect on their experience, focusing on what strategies worked well, any challenges faced, and the outcomes achieved. Prompt them to consider how their communication and conflict resolution skills influenced the interaction.

Step 5: Peer Feedback and Discussion
Facilitate a peer feedback and discussion session, where students can share their experiences, insights, and lessons learned from the assignment. Encourage them to provide constructive feedback to their peers, highlighting effective conflict resolution strategies and suggesting areas for improvement.

Step 6: Final Reflection Paper
Assign a final reflection paper where students synthesize their overall learning from the assignment. Ask them to discuss the impact of effective conflict resolution on patient care and share how they plan to incorporate these skills into their future nursing practice. Encourage them to provide examples from their own experiences or those shared by their peers.

By implementing this focused assignment on conflict resolution in patient care, you can empower your nursing students to navigate conflicts with patients in a compassionate and professional manner. Through simulated scenarios, thoughtful reflection, and peer feedback, students will develop vital skills that will serve them throughout their nursing careers.

Remember, conflict resolution is an ongoing process that requires continuous practice and refinement. Encourage your students to apply the lessons learned from this assignment to their clinical experiences and personal interactions. By doing so, they will become skilled advocates who can effectively resolve conflicts while upholding the values of patient-centered care.

I'd LOVE to hear your ideas of how you can use this assignment in your online courses. Share your thoughts, experiences and ideas in The Online Educator Facebook Group by clicking the link HERE

Want to get access to more assignments? Check out The Innovative Online Nurse Educator Membership. In addition to a monthly "Best Practice Masterclass", each month you receive a sample innovative online assignment, complete with assignment instructions and guidelines. Check out the additional benefits of this awesome membership HERE.

Would you like me to spotlight one of your assignments? Share your assignment HERE for an opportunity to be spotlighted in The Online Educator Blog.

I am a nurse and a college educator. I help other motivated educators leverage the tools needed to teach online successfully so that they can create lively, engaging, quality courses from the comfort of their homes!
© 2023~Natasha Nurse-Clarke~ All rights reserved. Originally published at This content can not be used for commercial purposes, including selling or licensing printed or digital versions of this content. For non-commercial purposes, please credit Natasha Nurse-Clarke~


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