Nursing Mentors in the School of Healthcare Sciences

Supporting students

(including the student who is failing to meet the required standard)


Recognise some of the common indicators of a student who’s performance is not commensurate with his / her stage of training?
Identify a range of strategies for supporting ‘weak’ students
Identify the principles of giving feedback?

Reflective Exercises

Failing a Student

Potentially clinical assessment of student nurses can safeguard professional standards, patients and the general public. It is inevitable that some students will not be able to meet the required level of practice and it is essential that mentors do not avoid the difficult issue of having to fail these students (Duffy, 2004)

As a named mentor, you are responsible for making the final assessment decision and are accountable for passing or failing the student (NMC, 2006).

References & Further reading

ASTON, L and HALLAM, P. (2014) Successful Mentoring in Nursing: Sage, London.

BESKINE D (2009) Mentoring students: establishing effective working relationships, Nursing Standard, 23(30) 35-40

DUFFY K. (2004) Failing students: a qualitative study of factors that influence the decisions regarding assessment of students' competence in practice. NMC: London

DUFFY K. (2007a) Supporting failing students in practice 1: assessment. Nursing Times, 103:47, 28-29

DUFFY K. (2007b) Supporting failing students in practice 2: management. Nursing Times, 103:48, 28-29

MALONEY D., CARMODY D., NEMETH E. (1997) Students experiencing problems learning in clinical setting in McALLISTER L., LINCOLN

M., McLEOD S., & MALONEY D. (eds) Facilitating Learning in Clinical Settings. Stanley Thornes: Cheltenham

NMC (2008) Standards to support learning and assessment in practice: NMC Standards for mentors, practice teachers and teachers. NMC: Londo

GOPEE, N. (2011) Mentoring and Supervision in Healthcare: Sage, London.

RCN (2007)Guidance for mentors of nursing & midwifery students. RCN: London

RCN (2007a) Helping students get the best from their practice placements. RCN: London

WALSH D. (2014) The Nurse Mentor's Handbook. Open University Press, Mc Graw Hill Education: Berkshire, England.

Site footer