Using practice and workplace learning theories to enhance clinical learning spaces

    Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


    In this chapter I write from a stance that acknowledges the complex, dynamic and contested nature of both healthcare practices and clinical workplaces where those practices are enacted and developed. In this chapter health professional workplace learning has been placed in the wider context of contemporary practice and workplacelearning literature illuminating a broader perspective than might have been gained by considering health professional clinical education in isolation. This is built on the premise that the identification and exploration of relevant learning theories for health professional workplace learning is best underpinned by deep and rich understandings of what practice is like and the nature of what needs to be learned in becoming a health professional. Practice is illuminated as a complex phenomenon encompassing a dynamic and broad range of activities embedded in particular traditions and workplace contexts and embodied in human performances. Workplace learning is explored as a complex sociocultural activity with the character of student learning shaped by physical, sociocultural, dynamic and contested characteristics of workplaces as well as the individual dispositions of students themselves. Through this broad exploration of practice and workplace learning, strategies to enhance clinical workplace learning are identified. To enhance the quality of clinical learning spaces, workplace learning supervisors are encouraged to step back and take a wide angled view of their workplaces and examine them with a more critical eye in order to be able to identify and harness the many and varied workplace influences on student learning.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationDeveloping practice capability
    Subtitle of host publicationTransforming workplace learning
    EditorsNarelle Patton, Joy Higgs, Megan Smith
    Place of PublicationLeiden, The Netherlands:
    PublisherBrill | Sense
    Number of pages8
    ISBN (Electronic)9789004366923
    ISBN (Print)9789004366916, 9789004366909
    Publication statusPublished - 16 Apr 2018

    Publication series

    NameHigher Education Horizons
    PublisherBrill Sense


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