This research focused on exploring the metaphors nursing students use to express their experience of university teachers'practice A social constructivist approach to meaning underlies the process of interpreting student language in this study The following evolved as major research questions What are the metaphors students use to describe teaching? How do these metaphors operate? The research concluded that students readily use metaphors to describe then-experiences of teaching within the nursing degree programme, there is a pattern to the choice of metaphors, some of these images function as incremental or constructive metaphors, extending understanding of what it means to teach, others support current understandings and reflect taken-for-granted notions of teaching Specific metaphors used by students to describe teaching were contextually analysed A number of them may offer teachers of nursing insight into their craft Metaphors such as teacher as umpire, teacher as student, teaching with distance and teaching the big picture may be useful images for teachers to think about to guide their practice