A virtual placement: an innovative initiative during a global pandemic was delivered by Emma Bockle and Lucy Stainer working with Desi Tait and Amanda Watson.
Many student nurses during the pandemic were unable to continue their learning in practice as practice was deemed unsafe (NMC 2020). A virtual placement on a pre-registration nursing programme was created in which students worked in groups and explored a specific geographical area through online and remote activity for 4 weeks working defined rubrics.
Students needed to comprehend health promotion, and this process created an opportunity to develop leadership, empowerment, independence, resilience and IT skills (Thomas and Asselin, 2018). A virtual placement is transferable to educational programmes requiring an analysis of a group or groups in a community.
This model of learning has significance nationally where placement capacity is predicted to be challenging with increased recruitment for health care professionals. It also reflects the need to introduce contemporary placement models that encompasses learning that is wider than the traditional placement model.
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