Tackling the challenges

Tackling the challenges of clinical education placements working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

It has been suggested that Indigenous placements should always be based on the principle that they are ‘a privilege and not a right’ (Whitford, Taylor & Thomas, 2013, p.340). The clinical educator needs to consider the relevance and possible impact of these challenging factors carefully. Some of these challenges might simply need to be accepted as inevitable, but worth tackling, to achieve the benefits of providing clinical education placements in Indigenous contexts. However, many of the challenges can be eased by:

Another key strategy is to allow more time than might be usual in other placements contexts to tackle many of these challenges. Time is important:

  • for the student - to spend more time talking, observing, reading and reflecting about what they are experiencing and learning; and
  • for the clinical educator - to spend more time with the student explaining, facilitating, discussing and working through some of the information, skills and attributes that will allow the student to benefit from the placement.

Whitford, D., Taylor, J., and Thomas, K. (2013). Working in Indigenous health settings. In K. Stagnitti, A. Schoo, & D. Welch (Eds.), Clinical and fieldwork placements in the health professions (2nd ed). Melbourne, Victoria: Oxford University Press (pp. 329-347).



Tackling the challenges Topics

Student preparation and support
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The structure or nature of the placement
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