An evaluation of nurses' experiences of mentoring pre-registration students
Nurse education in the UK has undergone a radical change over the past 30 years. The integration of nursing students within practice has evolved from an apprenticeship style to bespoke mentoring support. To act as mentors, registered nurses must have met stage 2 outcomes of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC)
To develop expertise, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended that the nursing profession improves support structures for post-registration programmes and, crucially, for students on pre-registration education programmes (WHO 2002a). Mentors are expected to undertake robust mentorship programmes in preparation for the mentoring role and to deliver multifaceted training, teaching, assessment and support of pre-registration nursing students while on clinical placements (Wilson, 2014). Although research is available that seeks to clarify expectation, many mentors state they are overwhelmed in practice by the responsibility of mentoring alongside their clinical work (Veeramah, 2012; Jokelainen et al, 2013; Wilson, 2014).
The Duffy report (2003) highlighted mentors' concerns about how they are facilitated to support students in practice, stating that mentors were finding it increasingly difficult to fulfil their role, leading to professional and organisational conflicts (Bray and Nettleton, 2007; Elcock and Sookhoo, 2007; Mead et al, 2011; Royal College of Nursing (RCN), 2012; Sandford, 2012; Veeramah, 2012).
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