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Distance Learning Tips for Nurse Practitioners (NPs)

An NP views online education on her computer

Register for the 2021 AANP National Conference to catch up on your NP continuing education (CE) — and connect virtually with your NP colleagues — from the comfort of your home!

The COVID-19 pandemic has made an impact on almost every aspect of our lives, including how we access evidence-based education, how we communicate with each other and how we care for patients. The health care field is changing rapidly, which is why it’s so important that you continue learning and improving in clinical practice. Developed by NPs for NPs, the American Association of Nurse Practitioners® (AANP) CE program provides exemplary educational experiences for NPs and NP students.

This year, AANP invites the NP community to the online 2021 AANP National Conference, where you can earn CE credit and network virtually with thousands of NPs from every specialty and practice setting who share your interest in high-quality education, evidence-based practice, information sharing and leadership skills. That said, how can you ensure you are making the most of your distance learning and achieve a successful online educational experience?

NP Distance Learning: Tips and Tricks

First, you will want to set the scene for learning. If possible, set up a designated workspace, preferably somewhere quiet where distractions will be limited. In addition, uninstall disruptive mobile apps, turn off app notifications on your mobile devices or resist the temptation to play mobile games, check email, send a text or surf the internet during your study time. Be sure to consider your own comfort, as well, by adjusting your seating, keyboard, computer mouse or computer screen and by ensuring proper lighting to reduce eye strain.

Second, you will want to be sure to read and follow all the instructions for your CE activities and conference sessions. As we’ve shifted to online learning, please be aware that some processes may have changed, such as how to claim AANP CE credit. Set yourself up for success at the 2021 AANP National Conference by:

  • Viewing the online live events, either when they’re presented or when they’re available on demand. To recreate the excitement of live CE sessions, the 2021 AANP National Conference includes a number of special events and keynote speeches presented on select dates throughout the conference period. Then, you can register for the on-demand versions of these events throughout the remainder of the conference period.
  • Receiving full credit for each conference session. To get full CE credit, you must first register for the sessions that you are interested in completing. For the on-demand sessions, you must watch all the video content to receive credit. For the 2021 AANP National Conference live events, you must be present for the entirety of the presentation when it is being offered, or you must watch all the recorded content once it becomes available.
  • Receiving your certificate for each conference session. After you complete all educational content for a specific session or online live event, you must submit the session evaluation to receive full CE and pharmacology credit. To receive your activity certificate of completion, click on the button labeled Get Certificate. A copy of the certificate will be emailed to you and a record will be automatically uploaded to your CE Tracker in the AANP CE Center within 1 hour of completion.

Third, you will want to manage your time effectively. Unlike at an in-person national conference, more than 80 CE sessions are available on demand, without a set presentation time. This offers incredible flexibility for you, particularly if you are juggling childcare, household duties, work requirements or other obligations. By planning for success before the conference begins and checking off each session off your list as you complete its evaluation, you’ll have a lot to celebrate when the 2021 AANP National Conference platform officially closes August 31, 2021.

Set realistic expectations for yourself in terms of what you can accomplish. Factor in scheduling conflicts to allow enough time for you to view your sessions and earn CE credit. It may help for you to create a calendar alert to remind yourself of the online live events and schedule time for on-demand sessions, to read posts in the Attendee Forum and to learn more about ongoing AANP initiatives and programs.

Lastly, you will want to get engaged and be an active attendee! There are several ways you can actively participate in the 2021 AANP National Conference:

  • Engage with other conference attendees. Everyone who registers is automatically invited to join the Attendee Forum. This is your dedicated space to discuss the conference sessions you’ve enjoyed, share what you’ve learned, introduce yourself to NPs from across the country and ask questions to enhance your learning experience. Post as often as you like, and return frequently to check replies, send messages to your NP friends and join other discussion threads.
  • Read the monthly attendee newsletter. Upcoming online live events, special CE topics, spotlights on conference exhibitors and membership information is included in each edition of the conference attendee newsletter.
Four NP learners smile and obtain continuing education online amid a colorful overlay of blue and red

Register for the 2021 AANP National Conference

Register today, and you can choose from more than 80 live and on-demand sessions — completely online. See the complete list of sessions and conference networking opportunities.

Following AANP on social media is a great way to connect with other NPs and industry professionals, to stay current with the latest health care news and to receive conference announcements — and to share how you are enjoying this year's conference!

Are you earning CE from your hammock? Are you on a boat or by the pool? What are you enjoying most about your online conference experience? Post a photo on social media using #AANP21 and tag @AANP_News on Twitter or Instagram to share your unique or interesting conference surroundings with colleagues.

Register Now