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Lecturer practitioners: a literature review


Pat Fairbrother The University of Sheffield, School of Nursing and Widwifery, Winter Street, Sheffield S3 7ND, England.


Much of the existing literature on lecturer practitioners to date is comprised of the perspectives of individuals within the role and how they function in their specific setting. It is surprisingly difficult from this work, however, to define the role of lecturer practitioner. The authors were commissioned by a regional health authority to undertake a study of lecturer practitioners within that region. In the process of undertaking this study, a literature review was carried out. Whilst the authors found an abundance of literature surrounding the theory and practice gap, and the development of the lecturer practitioner role as one possible solution, they were not able to find a comprehensive review of the multifaceted aspects of the lecturer practitioner role. This paper is an attempt to provide such a review, and will address the following aspects: the need for lecturer practitioners; their origin within nursing and midwifery education; the development of the lecturer practitioner role; the debate surrounding academic and clinical credibility; and finally, the current situation for lecturer practitioners.