Midwifery – Supporting students
Welcome to the Midwifery Practice Supervisors / Practice Assessor site
Alongside the changes to the standards for pre-registration programmes and proficiencies that midwives will need to demonstrate before they can enter the professional register, the NMC have reviewed how students will be supervised and assessed in both theory and practice (NMC 2018).
The roles of mentor, sign-off mentor, practice teacher and teacher (NMC 2008) have been withdrawn, and three new roles introduced to undertake the supervision and assessment of students; the practice supervisor, practice assessor and academic assessor. The NMC Standards for Student Supervision and Assessment (SSSA)(2018) require that registrants who facilitate learning and assess students must be prepared for these roles.
Practice Supervisor, Practice Assessor and Academic Assessors are vital to the development of our future midwives and our aim is to support you in your new roles.
Initially Midwifery in Wales planned to adopt the New Standards for Supervision and Assessment (2018) in 2021, however the COVID 19 emergency meant that these standards came into play for all programmes in March 2020.
Although midwifery programmes in Wales have transitioned to SSSA alongside the current validated programmes, there will be a need for a more formal implementation of SSSA alongside the implementation of revised midwifery programmes in Sept 2022. This page will provide information on the ‘Once for Wales Approach’ for transition, preparation training, updating and maintaining your role as a Practice Supervisor and/or Practice Assessor.
In Wales we have decided on a model where all midwives will be prepared as both practice supervisors and practice assessors by the end of their preceptorship year,
A practice supervisor is a registered healthcare professional who supports and supervises students, providing feedback on their progress towards, and achievement of proficiencies and skills (NMC, 2018).
A practice assessor is a NMC registrant who conducts assessments and confirms student achievement of proficiencies and programme outcomes for practice learning (NMC, 2018).
These web pages are designed specifically to act as a resource for Practice Supervisors and Practice Assessors. Under headings in the menu on the left / right hand side of the page you will find guidance and useful information as well as links to the NMC Standards.
So what is a Practice Supervisor and how will I be prepared and supported to undertake the role?
Practice Supervisors are a registered healthcare professional (Midwives) who support and supervise students, providing feedback on their progress towards, and achievement of proficiencies and skills (NMC, 2018).
Practice supervisors serve as role models and support learning within their scope of practice to support students to meet competencies/proficiencies and programme outcomes. They will support and supervise students providing feedback on their progress. Practice Supervisors also contribute to the student’s record of achievement and assessments by documenting progress in the students’ practice assessment document or portfolio.
The preparation for practice supervisor will be undertaken during their pre-registration programme training although band 5 newly qualified midwives will not be a named supervisor. Practice Supervisors will receive ongoing support to participate in the practice learning of students and in gaining an understanding of the proficiencies and programme outcomes they are supporting students to achieve.
What is a Practice Assessor and how will I be prepared and supported to undertake the role?
Practice assessors are NMC registrants who conduct assessments and confirm student achievement of proficiencies and programme outcomes for practice learning (NMC, 2018)
Practice assessors will undertake objective, evidence-based assessments of conduct, proficiency and achievement drawing on the practice assessment document, direct observation, student self-reflection and verbal communication.
Practice Assessors will conduct tripartite assessments with Academic Assessors to confirm student achievement of competencies/proficiencies based on feedback received from practice supervisors. They will communicate and collaborate with Academic Assessors at scheduled points in the programme and have an understanding of the student’s achievement in theory.
The preparation for Practice Assessor will take place in the final period of the preceptorship programme. All band 6 midwives will be prepared to be practice supervisors/assessors.
Academic assessors communicate and collaborate with Practice Assessors to make a recommendation for student progression for each part of the programme. Academic Assessor are part of the Midwifery Lecturing Team here at Bangor University and they will be allocated by the team and they will be a different assessor for each assessment period.