Within the School of Health we have a fundamental role in preparing and supporting people to work with the public, patients, carers and service users. We feel it is only right that these people should be involved in as many aspects of this as possible. We believe patients/service users and carers should be part of providing feedback on health and social care undergraduate students’ values and behaviours.

This is reinforced by the UK Government, who promote the idea that patients should contribute to the assessment of pre-registration student nurses. The Nursing and Midwifery Council promotes the idea that patients should contribute to the assessment of preregistration student nurses. With a strong emphasis currently on nursing becoming a more compassionate profession, the Francis report (2013) has highlighted a need to recruit, educate and assess nursing students with regard to their attitude, values, and beliefs in relation to providing care.

Who better to ask than the patients/service users and carers?

The following process was piloted and then implemented within all undergraduate nursing, midwifery and podiatry students from March 2014.

  • Undergraduate students are introduced to service user and carer involvement and the role of the service user/carer in student assessment in first module of their education programme.
  • Service user and carer feedback tools are available and are given to the Mentor by the student on placement.
  • The Mentor/Assessor follows a four step process.
  • Students’ practice learning documents have specific area for discussion with Mentor and recording Service user/carer feedback.

An e-learning activity was developed to support Mentors in this process. This is now an Open Education Resource available from http://find.jorum.ac.uk/resources/18963. Patient information posters were made available in practice areas and on digital display within patient areas in hospitals.

For more information about this assessment, please contact Linda Lilley, Senior Lecturer in Practice Development (Linda.Lilley@northampton.ac.uk)

This case study is taken from the Institute of Learning and Teaching’s 2015 publication ‘Outside the Box Assessment and Feedback Practices’, available from the University’s Assessment and Feedback portal.

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