A midwifery preceptorship needs assessment to inform curricular goals and recommendations for preceptor training in undergraduate education in Canada

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Background: Canadian baccalaureate midwifery educational curricula comprise a significant proportion of experiential learning opportunities facilitated by clinical preceptors. There is limited national published research on midwifery preceptors’ perspectives. Objectives: 1) To explore the current evidence in the published literature on the facilitators and barriers for clinical preceptorship in midwifery education; 2) To acquire quantitative and qualitative evidence that elicits data of the facilitators and barriers for midwifery preceptors in Canadian undergraduate education; and 3) To identify key recommendations for educational strategies for a midwifery preceptor training curriculum that can be operationalized within Canada. Methods: This doctoral project adhered to the first three steps of the six-step approach to Kerns’ curricular development framework for medical education. The first step, a general needs assessment, was completed in the form of a scoping review of international publications on facilitators and barriers for midwifery preceptors. The second step, a targeted needs assessment, was conducted in two phases. The preliminary phase was a national survey of midwifery preceptors (n=160) on benefits/rewards, support, commitment, and satisfaction in the role. The second phase explored midwifery preceptors’ perspectives with three national focus group interviews (n=16) under a constructivist paradigm utilizing a reflexive thematic analysis approach. In step three of the curricular development framework, research evidence gained from the general and targeted needs assessments was synthesized to produce goals, recommendations, and objectives for a proposed curriculum for midwifery preceptor training. Key Results: Through the completion of preceptors’ needs assessments, this research produced recommendations relevant to Canadian midwifery education. Suggestions on facilitation, essential elements, and considerations for a proposed preceptor training curriculum were offered. Furthermore, the Canadian midwifery care model tenets of autonomy, collaboration, and partnership were used as a basis to provide broader preceptor-related recommendations to stakeholders. Significance: In Canadian baccalaureate education, midwifery preceptors are the primary facilitators for most of the curriculum. In Canada, the onus for training preceptors rests within midwifery educational programs; however, all members of the quadripartite relationship in midwifery experiential curricula (e.g., educational programs, preceptors, learners, and the health care environment) are invested and benefit from measures that empower preceptors.
midwifery, preceptorship, experiential education and training
Upadhyaya, D. Y. (2021). A midwifery preceptorship needs assessment to inform curricular goals and recommendations for preceptor training in undergraduate education in Canada (Doctoral thesis, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada). Retrieved from https://prism.ucalgary.ca.