Clinical placements provide opportunities for student nurses to learn experientially. To create a constructive learning environment staff need to befriendly, approachable, available and willing to teach. There must be adequate opportunities for students to develop confidence and competence in clinical skills with a focus on student learning needs rather than service needs of facilities.A popular model for clinical teaching of nursing students is the preceptor model.This model involves a student working under the supervision of individual registered nurses who are part of the clinical staff. This model was failing to meet students'needs in acute nursing practice areas, largely due to Registered Nurse staff shortages and demanding workloads. The students' evaluations led to the trial of a 'cluster'or group model of eight students, with a clinical facilitator who is paid by the university, in each acute nursing ward.Evaluation of twenty nursing students' perceptions of their acute nursing practice clinical placements was conducted using a mixed method approach to evaluate the two models of student supervision. Results indicate that the students prefer small groups with the clinical facilitator in one area. Thus evaluation and feedback from students and the perceptions of their clinical placement is essential.