A report on the development and implementation of a preceptorship training programme for registered nurses
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BACKGROUND: Clinical supervision represents an important aspect in the development of nursing students’ clinical skills. At the School of Nursing (SoN) the clinical supervisors employed by the University of the Western Cape (UWC) have limited contact sessions with students in the clinical setting. However, with the increase in student numbers a need was identified to strengthen the support given to nursing students in the service setting. OBJECTIVE: A preceptorship training programme for nurses was developed in 2009, aimed at improving the clinical teaching expertise of professional nurses. The planning phase, based on a preceptorship model, represents a collaborative undertaking. by the higher education institution and the nursing directorate of the Provincial Government Western Cape. Method: A two-week, eight credit, short course was approved by the university structures and presented by staff members of the school. The teaching and learning strategies included interactive lectures, small group activities and preceptor-student encounters in simulated and real service settings. Some of the course outcomes were: applying the principles of clinical teaching and learning within the context of adult education, understanding the preceptor role and managing Results: To date, fifty-four participants have attended the course. Following an internal review of the pilot programme in 2010, relevant adjustments to the programme were made. CONCLUSION: It is recommended that all the stakeholders be involved in the development and implementation of a contextually relevant preceptorship training programme. It is further recommended that the school embarks on an extensive programme evaluation.