Making Practice-Based LearningWork

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


The first year (2003 – 2004) of a three year nationally funded project focused on completing a scoping exercise on the nature of practice education in five selected professions: Dietetics, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Radiography ( A survey questionnaire, focus groups and secondary sources were used to collect data. Profession specific contributors completed the analysis of results. Resulting case studies were combined to produce an interprofessional overview of current issues in practice-based learning.The nursing case study identified areas of good practice such as; the mentorship model; the development of new support roles; and joint responsibility between Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and Health Service areas for practice assessment. For nursing the most positive feature of practice learning was the acceptance by experienced practitioners that they should have a key role in the education of pre-registration students. However, there were variations in the application of these areas of good practice throughout the UK. Issues identified included; an inadequate supply of qualified mentors; lack of formal recognition of the mentor role; and lack of knowledge of the relative impact of the differing mentor preparation programmes highlighted by problems mentors had in dealing with difficult students and in understanding the assessment process and documentation.In comparing the five professions, all had statutory requirements regarding the nature of practice learning but each profession differed in how this was managed and organised. Overall the nursing case study recommended standardisation in the preparation of mentors and recognition for the role they play in making practice based learning work. In addition a more collaborative approach to the provision of mentorship training may serve to offset the identified resource issues.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUnknown Host Publication
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 10 Sept 2007
EventAn Bord Altranais National Conference 2007 Nursing and Midwifery Education: Enhancing Learning in Clinical Practice - Dublin
Duration: 10 Sept 2007 → …


ConferenceAn Bord Altranais National Conference 2007 Nursing and Midwifery Education: Enhancing Learning in Clinical Practice
Period10/09/07 → …


  • Practice education
  • Mentors
  • Interprofessional
  • education
  • Survey
  • Case studies


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