Peer learning at a prenatal ward- beneficial for students and clinical preceptors
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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Lund, Sweden
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Malmö, Sweden
Department of Health Sciences, Lunds University, Lund, Sweden
Publication date: 2023-10-24
Corresponding author
Tina Göransson   

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Lund, Sweden
Eur J Midwifery 2023;7(Supplement 1):A113
In order to find a pedagogical model to increase learning for midwifery students and to meet the challenge of shortage of experienced preceptors, Peer Learning has been implemented and evaluated at a perinatal unit in Sweden. Peer Learning is a model that promotes student activity and collaborative learning in pairs at clinical placements. Previous research shows positive results from intrapartum care, but less is known from a perinatal care context. Midwifery education in Sweden is a 1,5-year program for registered nurses at an advanced level. Half of the education is devoted to clinical placements at various units, such as labor/delivery, pre- and postnatal care. At a perinatal care unit for women with complicated pregnancies, in southern Sweden, midwifery students have a weeklong clinical placement during their third semester. Apart from care for women with various diagnoses, such as preeclampsia, PROM or bleeding complication, students practice care during induction of labor and planned cesarean section.

Material and Methods:
At the start of the clinical placement, two students and their preceptor have a preparatory meeting. The students are informed about the unit and share their expectations and previous experiences. From their individual needs, students are assigned 1-2 patients each to take care of under supervision. They discuss and plan for the care with their peer and confirm with the preceptor. The role of the preceptor is to encourage the students to reflect, reason, ask questions and try to solve practical issues. In addition, students work in pairs with structured learning activities related to the assigned patients’ diagnoses. At the end of each day, students and preceptor summarize, reflect and students practice giving feedback to each other. The method has been written and verbally evaluated by all students.

The unit has been using Peer Learning for two years and approximately 15 students have been assigned. Their evaluations show that the students were positive to the Peer Learning model. They stated that they did not feel as alone and vulnerable as they sometimes do when they start at a new clinical placement. The possibility to be increasingly responsible for their learning was beneficial and discussions with peers further enhanced learning. From a preceptor perspective, the experience is that students progress faster and are more reflective before, during and after a task than with traditional supervision. The students thereby deepen their knowledge and the application of it, which is a foundation for critical thinking.

The results indicate that Peer Learning is beneficial for both students and preceptors in a prenatal unit. To evidence -base Peer Learning as a method for supervision during clinical placements in the prenatal context, research is needed.

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.
There is no funding for this research.
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