Most health professionals who support students on their learning journey discover they need additional skills and support to be effective supervisors.
In this video, Building skills in clinical education: Facilitating the learning journey - YouTube Teresa and Anne from the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Queensland talk about ways learning can be facilitated on student placements.
Supporting the student's journey
Adults tend to learn best when they are allowed to take responsibility for the learning process. The supervisor’s role is to facilitate self-directed learning rather than teach. A key concept to consider is the supervisor’s role as a coach, encouraging the student to find out or talk/think through the answer, rather than telling them as a teacher. The supervisor should ask guiding questions to encourage the student to test options, analyse risk and consider limitations and innovations. For students, the ability to drive one’s own learning is an essential skill in learning to manage varied and unpredictable clinical scenarios.
Tips to support the student's journey include:
Creating opportunities for self-directed learning
Working collaboratively with the student to identify opportunities and resources to support the achievement of learning objectives:
Considering learning styles
Facilitating skill acquisition
One of the challenges for supervisors is knowing the stage the student is at, and adjusting the supervision (level of instruction, amount of support) accordingly. The infographic below explains Peyton’s 4-step teaching approach on skill acquisition:
Please Note: References remain valid until superseded by later research. The resources referenced here are regularly reviewed and are considered current and relevant to the topics presented.
- Health Education and Training Institute (2023). Clinical supervision: The superguide: a handbook for supervising allied health professionals https://www.heti.nsw.gov.au/education-and-training/our-focus-areas/allied-health/clinical-supervision
- Coffield, F., Moseley, D., Hall, E. and Ecclestone, K. (2004) Should we be using Learning Styles? What research has to say to practice. London: Learning and Skills Research Centre. Retrieved from http://itslifejimbutnotasweknowit.org.uk/files/LSRC_LearningStyles.pdf
- Doran, G.T. (1981), ‘There’s a S.M.A.R.T. way to write management’s goals and objectives’, Management Review, 11, (AMA FORUM), 35-36.
- Giacomino, Katia & Caliesch, Rahel & Sattelmayer, K.. (2020). The effectiveness of the Peyton's 4-step teaching approach on skill acquisition of procedures in health professions education: A systematic review and meta- analysis with integrated meta-regression. PeerJ. 10.7717/peerj.10129.
- Health Education and Training Institute (2023). Clinical supervision: TThe learning guide: A handbook for allied health professionals facilitating learning in the workplace https://www.heti.nsw.gov.au/education-and-training/our-focus-areas/allied-health/clinical-supervision
- Health Workforce Australia (2013). Enabling Clinical Supervision Skills. Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia.
- Honey, P. & Mumford, A. (2006). The learning styles questionnaire, 80-item version. Maidenhead, UK: Peter Honey Publications.
- Lake, F. & Hamdorf, J. (2004) Teaching on the run tips 5: Teaching a Skill. Medical Journal of Australia. 181 (6): 327-328.
- Smith, P. & Blake, D. (2005). Facilitating learning through effective teaching: At a Glance. Adelaide: Australian Government.
- Stalmeijer, R., Dolmans, D., Wolfhagen, I., Muijtjens, A., & Scherpbier, A. (2008). The development of an instrument for evaluating clinical teachers: involving stakeholders to determine content validity. Medical Teacher, 30, e272 – e277.