Clinical placements and readiness for practice

Undergraduate nursing students are pivotal to ongoing replenishment and building of the nursing workforce. Clinical placements are integral to preparing students for their graduate practice. Over decades, much has been written about clinical placements and graduate readiness for practice with perpetuated discussion around theory-practice gaps and inabilities of graduates ‘to hit the floor running’. Given the extent of research around these phenomena, the question is raised about whether educators and administrators are reading the research and seeking to implement the findings. Hence, this virtual special issue seeks to bring to the fore previous research published in Collegian around clinical placements and readiness for practice. It brings together a collection from many years of relevant work that remain relevant to education today.

Much research has sought to increase the experience of students on placements to enhance the likelihood of them being well supported and retained in the profession. It has long been recognised that students can experience negative behaviours from clinical staff, impacting on their learning. Budden et al. (2017) explored the experiences of Australian nursing students related to bullying and harassment.

Nursing is a global profession. There is a need to prepare students for working in diverse settings and with to work effectively with diverse multicultural groups. I am pleased to provide a selection of papers from previous editions of Collegian that has dealt with important issues relating to this area.