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Supporting nursing and midwifery students with dyslexia on clinical placements

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  • Supporting nursing and midwifery students with dyslexia on clinical placements

  • LocationNursing and Midwifery Burton 141Sandwell: 154 Wolverhampton 149Dudley 168Walsall 162Social WorkApprox 50 placements

  • Length of placementNursing and Midwifery Equal value 50/50Midwifery up to 60/40Nursing up to 300 hrs simulation

    Social Work200 daysYr 1 30 daysYr 2 70 days UGYr 3 100 days

    Yr 1 80 days PGYr 2 120 days

  • Key Drivers Concerns about managing failing studentsSuitability Panel RemitLegislationLocal Research

  • Dyslexia isA specific learning difficulty which mainly affects the development of literacy and language related skillsLikely to be present at birth and lifelong in its effectsInformation processing difficulties: working memory, phonological processing, processing speed, automatic skills development.Often resistant to conventional teaching methods, but its effects can be mitigated by appropriately specific intervention. (Ref: British Dyslexia Association [accessed 07/03/11].

  • Study Aims: opening phaseTo identify -the main challenges to dyslexic student nurses in achieving the professional standards of competence relating to record keeping- how they can best be supported in the development of these skills-what interventions that would be most acceptable and effective-who should be involved in this process-where it should take place

  • Gaining perspectives and ideasStudent nurses with dyslexia10 individual semi-structured interviewsMidwifery: 2Mental Health:2Adult: 6Poster adverts / tutoring systemPlacement mentorsFocus Group interviewsAcute Hospital (4)PCT 2/6 have dyslexiaPPMs as co-facilitators

  • Students: perceived strengthsPractical tasks (8/10)Communicating with patients; putting at ease, extracting information, listening, people reading (10/10)

  • DisclosureStudents5 reported told all mentors irrespective of anticipated response5 disclosed selectivelyGeneral response: +veA few less helpful responses and actionsOh, but you have such a pretty faceMentorsHighest number of mentees with dyslexia reported by the 2 mentors with dyslexiaAll believed had mentored several students with dyslexia who had not disclosedBelief : willingness to disclose related to life stage

  • Key difficulties identified by studentsKnowing what to write and where to write itVisual stress: clinical formsIdentifying key information and prioritising orderLearning and using professional terminology / phrasing in different areasRecording handover informationAdmission forms: multitasking involvedInterruptionsRetaining information until time to document thisCorrect spellings Identifying goalposts

  • Key difficulties identified by mentorsVaried with area and nature of clinical documentation usedLearning of correct spellings of drug names and medical conditionsLonger to complete recordsHandovers: speed and accuracy issuesIdentification, selection ad ordering of relevant informationShort-term memory issuesSentence structuring

  • Intervention proposalsNotion of a blank sheetConsider where interventions should take placeWhat these should consist ofWho should be involvedIdeas raised for both university and placement settings

  • University based: studentsClinical record writing introduction early in 1st yearClarity on standards required: examplesIntroduction to common documentsGeneric skills development: e.g. writing succinctly, spelling strategies, identifying and documenting key information from scenarios, mock handoversOpen to all, not just those with dyslexia

  • University based: mentorsProvision of a mentor awareness sheet.Advance notice of students additional support needs to allow time for preparation and consultation.

  • Students: placement settingLists of common terminology, key phrases, correct spellingsDocument templates for each area and useful phrases for each sectionOpportunity for repetitionMore time for completing recordsBetter dyslexia awareness among mentorsProvision of an awareness sheet to give out voluntarily

  • Mentors: placement settingA specialist mentor in every work area as a point of reference / adviser for other mentors in the area and students experiencing difficulties.Dyslexia awareness and support training for all mentors.

  • Actions so far to encourage disclosurePlacement Awareness SheetBaseline list of reasonable adjustmentsOption of adding further adjustmentsFluid throughout courseDecision to pass to placement mentor lies with the student.

  • Actions so far to encourage disclosureCAPD booklet statement to

    encourage disclosuremake reasonable adjustmentsshare placement awareness sheet

  • Actions so far to encourage disclosureHandbook to enhance support for students with dyslexia

    Tips for students Tips for mentors General information Signposts additional support

  • Dyslexia Champions Training DayOpen initially to practice placement managers / supervisorsPositive attributes of dyslexiaLocating dyslexia in neurodiversity arenaInformation processing differencesStrategies to enhance reading speed accuracy and confidenceStrategies to aid clinical record writingDyslexia simulationsPosters to identify Dyslexia Champions in work areas

  • Actions in the pipelineEvaluation of Dyslexia Champions trainingPosters to advertise Dyslexia championsFollow up meetingsGeneric skills developmentMonitoring student disclosure through our Suitability Panel

    *1650 Students 1450 Nursing 130 Midwifery 260 Social WorkUniversity Prides itself in widening participation

    In readiness for the new all graduate programme 621 annually (mental health 67 annually)

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