Said Another Way

The Impact of Mentorship on Clinical Learning

Authors


Author contact: nora.kilcullen@dcu.ie, with a copy to the Editor: cooperconsulting@socal.rr.com

Abstract

The aim of this study was to elicit student nurses’ perceptions of the impact of mentorship on clinical learning. A qualitative descriptive research design was used in the study. A purposive sample of 29 student nurses in their third year of a Diploma Programme (Project 2000) participated in the study. The study was undertaken at a British university. Data were collected by focus group interviews. The interviews were taped and transcribed verbatim by the researcher. Data were analyzed using content analysis. The findings of the study indicated that mentors played a major role in enhancing students’ learning through support, acting as role models, performing socialization roles, and acting as assessors. While mentors played a major role in enhancing learning for students, there was a general agreement between students that there would need to be more emphasis on the acquisition of analytic skills and problem solving for students in order to prepare them for the demands of clinical nursing practice in the future. While this is a small study, its findings reiterate the importance of a clinical learning environment, which is conducive to learning.

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