Comparison of three clinical facilitation models for midwifery students undertaking clinical placement in South Australia

Lois Mckellar, Julie Fleet, Rachael Vernon, Kristen Graham, Megan Cooper

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned reportpeer-review


This study built on a non-funded project undertaken in collaboration with South Australia Health (SA Heath), Women's and Children's Health Network (WCHN), University of South Australia (UniSA) and Flinders University (FU) which sought to document and develop a ‘Shared’ clinical facilitation model for midwifery students who undertake clinical placement at a site used by multiple education providers.In this research study a mixed method approach was used to evaluate the Shared clinical facilitation model in promoting a quality clinical learning experience for students and to compare and contrast this model with two other models of clinical facilitation currently used to facilitate UniSA and FU midwifery students. Clinical Facilitators, students and midwives participated in this project through a variety of data collection means, representing two universities; UniSA and FU, five hospital sites; Women and Children’s Hospital, Flinders Medical Centre, Lyell McEwin Hospital, Ashford Hospital and Burnside Memorial Hospital and three clinical facilitation models. These include: a) A Shared clinical facilitation model in which a fulltime Midwifery Education Facilitator is funded by both South Australian Universities. b) A Seconded Model in which a midwife is seconded from their ongoing position within the hospital, and allocated shifts to undertake clinical facilitation dependant on student numbers. c) A Contracted model where UniSA or FU contract a midwife on a casual basis to facilitate the students. All Midwifery students from both universities (UniSA and FU), who had been placed in one of the five venues participating in the study, within the past 8 weeks were invited to complete an e-survey (n=298), 158 from UniSA and 140 FU students. The survey was designed to illicit their perceptions and satisfaction in relation to the clinical facilitation models. 174 students responded to the e-survey (124 UniSA, 50 FU) resulting in a 58% response rate. In general students reported positive feedback regarding all three models of clinical facilitation, indicating that students were orientated well, felt supported and achieved their learning objectives. There were several key differences within each model with strengths and challenges identified. In addition, midwives working in the venues under study were invited to undertake a purpose designed questionnaire that was distributed as an e-survey and in hard copy across the five participating hospital venues. 149 Midwives responded and reported positive feedback in relation to all three models of clinical facilitation.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAdelaide
PublisherUniversity of South Australia
Number of pages53
ISBN (Electronic)9780648135319
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Midwifery students
  • clinical placements
  • facilitation models
  • clinical surpervision


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