Academic Journal Picks for Student Nurse Practitioners

Whether you like to curl up with a good book for 15 minutes as you fall asleep at night, flip through a magazine by the pool on a sunny day or start your day off with coffee and the newspaper, reading is a great way to relax. For nurse practitioner students, using this time to peruse nursing, medical and clinical journals can be a great way to supplement your NP education. 

An NP student recently asked me which journals I would recommend for nurse practitioners in training. Admittedly, my reading list is far too long to keep up with but there are several academic journals I enjoy flipping through from time to time. I suggest selecting a few nursing, clinical, medical, and nurse practitioner journals to follow to give yourself a well rounded education. Most journals offer a selection of free articles online or have special rates for students so you don't have to break the bank to keep up professionally. Here are a few of my top journal recommendations for nurse practitioner students. 

The New England Journal of Medicine

The New England Journal of Medicine offers frequently updated content online covering a smattering of specialties. From clinical cases to public health perspectives, the NEJM is a wealth of information. Whatever your specialty of interest, this journal will keep you up to date with the latest clinical research and professional trends. While the NEJM isn't free for NPs, a $149 annual subscription gets gets you a printed copy of the journal, online and iPad access, as well as audio versions of popular articles. Graduation gift, anyone?

The Journal of the American Medical Association

A staple among medical journals, The Journal of the American Medical Association group of publications lives up to its name. From specialty specific journals like JAMA Dermatology and JAMA Pediatrics to offering online CME activities, a subscription to JAMA is well worth the cost for nurse practitioner students. At an affordable $45/year, JAMA gives students online access to the publications latest studies, opinions, and continuing education resources. Students looking for a cheaper way to get their clinical news fix may check out a selection of articles on the JAMA blog, news@JAMA

Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners

With content directed specifically toward nurse practitioners, the Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners is a clinically and professionally relevant publication for NPs. Content covers the latest in nurse practitioner legislation and events, clinical practice guidelines, health policy, original research, and case studies. Free to AANP members, the JAANP is a cost effective way to stay up to date as an NP. Not an AANP member? Access a free sample issue before committing to a subscription. 

Monthly Prescribing Reference

This must-have reference for nurse practitioners isn't technically a journal but given its utility I just had to include it in this list. The MPR Nurse Practitioner's Edition provides medication dosage and prescribing information for more than 4,000 drugs and is updated quarterly to give NPs the most up to date information. At $59 for an annual subscription, this resource is an affordable addition to your reference library. Check with your employer to see if they mind footing the bill as other providers in your practice will find the MPR useful as well. 

The Journal for Nurse Practitioners

Another profession specific publication, The Journal for Nurse Practitioners gives access to many full-text articles free online. From scope of practice updates to the latest in clinical research, The Journal for Nurse Practitioners is worth an online flip-through to check out each month's featured articles. This month's focus is an inspiring special on the 50th anniversary of the NP role. Want a paper copy of The Journal for Nurse Practitioners delivered to your door? Oh, that's free, too!

Clinician Reviews

If you're a nurse practitioner student looking to brush up on your practical know how, Clinician Reviews is for you. Access to articles is free (simply create an online account) and a digital edition can be downloaded directly to your iPad or laptop. Articles feature content such as "Asphyxiation by Cake: An Unusual Case of Dyspnea" and "Considering Probiotics? What You Must Know First". Clinician Reviews reads easier than many academic journals and is a great way to stay up to date with the latest clinical information when you aren't in the mood for a head-scratching read. 

2 Minute Medicine

While this resource doesn't technically qualify as an academic journal, for the NP student in a time crunch (who isn't?!), 2 Minute Medicine is a life-saver. The website gives brief overviews, just a few paragraphs in length, of the latest medical studies. The resource allows clinicians to get to the bottom-line without wading through the sometimes painstaking detail included in academic publications-perfect for an overview of the latest research. 

The American Journal of Nursing

As nurse practitioners, we were all nurses first and it's important to stay connected to the foundation of our profession. The American Journal of Nursing has been "the leading voice of nursing since 1900" and continues to offer insight into the profession, often free of charge. The journal delves into nursing policy and issues keeping clinicians up to date. 

Which publications do you find helpful as a nurse practitioner?

 

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