Student Stories

The Covid-19 pandemic has seen unprecedented challenge and change for all practitioners and students. Please read Karen Hughes’s inspirational heart-warming reflection about her experience during the pandemic.

Practice Supervision and Assessment

Welcome to our practice learning site, it contains resources for all registered health professionals involved in supervising, supporting and assessing pre-registration nursing, midwifery students, and other AHP students including those on some postgraduate courses. It contains information on the standards for student supervision and assessment, responsibilities attached to the roles, preparation, resources and ongoing support to achieve effective practice learning.

Effective and safe practice learning is a vital component of all healthcare professionals’ education. A positive learning environment is essential for students. They have to be supervised, supported and empowered to develop as competent professionals to achieve their learning outcomes and proficiencies to meet professional standards at the point of registration. Students must ultimately be able to provide safe, effective, compassionate person-centred care.

Practice Education Facilitators and Link tutors provide a link between the School of Health Science and practice learning settings. They support the professionals involved in practice learning, helping to maintain and develop the learning environment.

In 2018 the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) introduced the Future Nurse: Standards of Proficiency for registered nurses together with Realising professionalism: standards framework for nursing and midwifery education. Part 2 applies to all NMC programmes. The Future Midwife: Standards of proficiency for midwives were introduced by the NMC in 2019. We are working towards programme approval for implementation in September 2022.

The impact of Covid-19 pandemic on organisations delayed the approval time frame of the ‘NMC Future Nurse Standards 2018 pre-registration nursing curriculum programme. In the interim, a modified student nurse transition assessment document was implemented to reflect the SSSA. Minor changes were also made to the current midwifery practice assessment document to reflect the supervisor and assessor roles in the SSSA.

Key changes

The NMC (2018) Standards for student supervision and assessment were introduced in the NMC Emergency Standards in March 2020 at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic ahead of the planned September date.

The NMC SLAiP standards (2008) cease to exist, along with the terms mentor and sign off mentor replaced by the new roles of Practice Supervisor, Practice Assessor and Academic Assessor. A separation of supervision and assessment

Practice supervisor facilitates learning, empowers students to become independent learners, conducts formative assessment, gives feedback to student and records. Contributes to assessment.

Practice assessor collates evidence of achievement of proficiency from many sources including direct observation, feedback and documents, to confirm achievement of proficiency.

All practice settings have a Nominated Lead person who is responsible for the learning environment and allocates students to a named Practice Supervisor and a Practice Assessor. They are a point of contact for students and deal with their concerns.

Both Practice Assessor and Academic assessor will agree student progression.

40% working requirement removed. Triennial review replaced by the requirement that all Practice Supervisors and Practice Assessors provide evidence of professional development and of educational activities to demonstrate knowledge of student programme at PADR and revalidation.

Once for Wales

Representatives from the Health Boards and AEI’s in Wales have developed “Once for Wales” documents and processes to support the implementation of the NMC standards for nursing throughout the principality. A similar “Once for Wales” approach is being adopted for Midwifery with the appointment of midwifery programme managers to facilitate the development of a practice assessment document and processes to support implementation of the NMC SSSA midwifery programmes in Wales.

All Welsh Health Boards were due to implement SSSA for nursing, in September 2020, and midwifery in 2021, however, the NMC Covid-19 pandemic Emergency Standards (March 2020), brought about early implementation. The NMC Recovery Standards (2020) stated that students should return to normal studies and supernumerary status from 30th September 2020. In July, 2020, the NMC moved the implementation deadline for midwifery programmes to September 2022.

All students will receive support, supervision and assessments in line with the Standards for student supervision and assessment (NMC 2018).

All registered professionals involved in the supervision and assessment of students require preparation for the new roles of Practice Supervisor (PS) and Practice Assessor (PA). Details of preparation courses for nursing are to be found to be found under PS/PA preparation. Midwifery preparation courses will be developed as part of a Once for Wales approach and will be available under the midwifery tab/link.