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Questions Frequently Asked by Students

Will I be expected to travel? 

Yes, CPPSU staff attempt to provide students with placements close to home. However, there is a need to ensure that you have a wide experience throughout the three year programme across all types of placement. As our placements are spread across South Wales there will be a need to travel. All your placements are reachable by public transport. Questions about the financial implications of travelling to placements are answered on the Finance FAQ page.

Can I change placements? 

Only in exceptional circumstances. Do not contact CPPSU staff directly regarding any issues with placement allocation. Instead, contact your Programme Manager. All changes must be authorised by the Director of CPPSU.

What support can I expect in practice? 

Each placement has four people who offer you support:

Clinical Mentor

You will be allocated a mentor and possibly co-mentor for each clinical placement you attend across the programme. The mentor is a clinical expert and they have the responsibility of ensuring that you are competent within clinical practice throughout the programme. Mentors undergo specific preparation before they are able to support you in practice and are vital individuals in preparing you to become a qualified nurse or midwife.

Clinical Teacher/Practice Facilitator

The two main Local Health Boards employ a number of individuals in these roles to assist in the preparation and continued support of mentors. (In areas where clinical teachers/practice facilitators are not employed the link lecture will assist in the ongoing support of mentors). In addition, they work closely with mentors, link lecturers and personal tutors to help support those students who require additional support in practice.

Link Lecturer

Each clinical area has an academic linked to it. Their role is to ensure that the area is pertinent to your learning needs through the process of educational audit. They are there to support you should you require additional support in the clinical area and are also available for mentors to discuss specific issues relating to individual student placement. They will always link back to personal teachers if issues have arisen about individual students.

To find out the Clinical Teacher/Practice Facilitator and Link Lecturers for your placement, view the Placement Profile for your clinical placement.

Personal Pastoral Tutor

Each student is allocated a personal tutor who will provide pastoral support throughout the programme. They will also be available to support and advise students when they are developing action plans for each placement.

What is expected of me? 

Contact clinical area at least one week prior to commencing placement. Act professionally. Inform CPPSU of changes in circumstances (change of address/telephone).

When do I make up any time lost? 

All sickness and absences must be made up during clinical placement, consolidation weeks and annual leave. Hours should not exceed EU Directive of 48 hours/week.

Do I need to check my car insurance policy if I am using my car to travel to practice placements or to undertake a case load when on a primary health care placement? 

Yes, it is your responsibility to check that you have the appropriate car insurance by checking your policy and contacting your insurance company.

I have been placed in a practice placement area which works core shifts. Can I negotiate to undertake a 12 hour shift pattern? 

In line with the schools shift pattern guidelines students can only undertake 12 hours shift patterns in area where they are the norm. You should always endeavour to work the same shifts as your mentor.

If I experience any problems during the practice based learning programme who should I contact? 

In the first instance you should speak to your mentor or the clinical placement manager. If you require further support, there are a number of people you can contact. These include your link lecturer, clinical teacher/practice facilitator and personal pastoral tutor. If they are unavailable contact the SID desk (029 20 687766) who will advise you on the contact details of the Programme Manager or the Director of CPPSU.

What breaks am I entitled to on a shift? 

On a 7.5 hours shift, 10 minutes on a 12.5 hour shift 30 minutes, plus 2x10 minute breaks.

If I have carers leave or compassionate leave, will I have to work it back? 

Yes, the NMC stipulate that BN students have to work 2300 hours in clinical placements throughout their programme of studies. Therefore, any time taken off from clinical practice for whatever reason will be required to be made up. There are consolidation weeks built into the programme for these hours.

BMid programmes do not stipulate exact hours but you will be required to make up hours to ensure that you have worked sufficient hours each year.

I have passed my numeracy calculations in University, why won’t my mentor sign off my practice outcomes relating to drug calculations? 

The practice outcome document is looking at competence in the clinical area and practical application. The Numeracy exam concentrates on theoretical knowledge.