Student attrition from pre-registration nursing and midwifery education remains a concern. The literature identifies that often reasons for leaving a programme of study are complex. Issues such as personal difficulties, lack of support, financial difficulties and meeting the academic demands of nursing or midwifery education might push students away from programmes. Support and the development of resilience are understood to facilitate students to remain on pre-registration programmes. These factors might be addressed through the provision of specialised pastoral care within the nursing and midwifery programmes. The Scottish Government’s Delivery Group for Recruitment and Retention commissioned three pilot projects to evaluate the impact providing a specialised pastoral support advisor service to students on nursing and midwifery programmes. Although these pilot projects developed differently in recognition of the differing contexts in which they were operating they operated under an agreed philosophy and conceptual framework. Evaluation of the projects identified that there was a role for these and that students and staff experience them as a useful resource. This paper provides an overview of the development of these services and discusses what appear to be key factors in their success.
Head, K. S., Stenhouse, R., Ogle, A., & Redpath, M. (2013). Developing a model for pastoral support of pre-registration nursing and midwifery students: the experience of three Scottish universities