Nursing and midwifery students’ sense of connectedness within their learning communities

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Nursing Education, 2019, 58 (1), pp. 47 - 52
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© 2019, Slack Incorporated. All rights reserved. Background: Recognition of the importance of a supportive academic and clinical learning environment for nursing and midwifery students enrolled in health care programs is not new. However, the factors that influence social connections within these environments and the consequences for students’ learning are not well understood. Method: This study used a multisite mixed-methods design to examine students’ learning experiences. Results: Participants stated that to develop a sense of professional connectedness, opportunities are needed to develop meaningful relationships with academic staff and peers through increased face-to-face on-campus learning experiences, as well as through off-campus contexts. Conclusion: To enhance nursing and midwifery students’ sense of connectedness, the balance between online and face-to-face learning experiences needs to be reexamined, and a renewed focus on the development of quality clinical learning experiences that foster a sense of belonging also is needed.
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