‘Newcomer adaptation’: a lens through which to understand how nursing students fit in with the real world of practice
Article first published online: 24 JAN 2014
© 2014 The Author. Journal of Clinical Nursing published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.
Journal of Clinical Nursing
Volume 23, Issue 15-16, pages 2367–2375, August 2014
How to Cite
Houghton, C. E. (2014), ‘Newcomer adaptation’: a lens through which to understand how nursing students fit in with the real world of practice. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 23: 2367–2375. doi: 10.1111/jocn.12451
- Issue published online: 12 JUL 2014
- Article first published online: 24 JAN 2014
- Manuscript Accepted: 23 JUN 2013
- newcomer adaptation;
- nurse education;
- organisational socialisation;
- peer support;
- professional issues;
- students’ socialisation
Aims and objectives
To present a discussion on newcomer adaptation as a lens through which to understand how nursing students adapt to clinical practice and raise awareness of strategies that can be used to enhance their learning experiences.
Socialisation is an important factor that facilitates students’ learning in the clinical setting. Therefore, it is beneficial to examine organisational socialisation literature, particularly that pertaining to newcomer adaptation.
This is a critical review of organisational socialisation literature.
Seminal literature and more recent research in the field of organisational socialisation and newcomer adaptation were accessed. In addition, nursing and allied health literature examining students’ socialisation and the clinical learning environment was retrieved.
It is revealed in this article that to create an appropriate clinical learning environment, an understanding of socialisation tactics could be beneficial. Role modelling is deemed crucial to successful newcomer adaptation. Peer support is necessary but must be advocated with caution as it can have a negative impact when students form a ‘parallel community’. Students with some knowledge of the workplace tend to adapt more easily. Likewise, students’ disposition and, in particular, their confidence can also enhance the socialisation process.
Relevance to clinical practice
Both the organisation and the student can impact on how successfully the nursing student ‘fits in’. Understanding this through the lens of newcomer adaptation means that strategies can be put in place to facilitate this process.