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Learning objectives for student clinical placement should be provided by the affiliated University. Review these learning objectives and determine practical situations in which these objectives may be met. Discuss these with the student when setting expectations.

When determining how to practically address the learning objectives within the workplace, considering the SMART principle should help, as outlined in the table below.


(Clear and unambiguous)

What do you want to accomplish? Who will be involved? Where will it occur?


How much? How many? How will you know when you have reached your goal?


How will your goal be achieved? Are there factors likely to limit achievement of your goal? 


Do the expectations meet the needs/capacity of the student?


Can it be achieved today? In 2 weeks? 

(Doran, 1981).

An example of a SMART goal template can be found in Appendix F of The Superguide (Health Education & Training Institute, 2011, p 78).

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