Final year students' experiences of the Bachelor of Midwifery course Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • : the aim of the study was to explore the experiences of final year Bachelor of Midwifery students.earlier research indicates that midwifery students experience a number of difficulties and concerns during their studentship. These difficulties can lead to a lack of confidence and poorer integration and socialisation into the profession. Ultimately, poorer integration may lead to dissatisfaction and attrition from the profession.a qualitative approach, informed by interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA), was used in this study. Ten completing Bachelor of Midwifery students participated in in-depth interviews and reflected on their experiences over their three year course. Data were subjected to IPA analytic steps as proposed by Smith and Osborn (2008).demographics revealed that participants were generally aged more than 35 years and worked 16 hours or less per week. Most had two or more children and lived with a spouse/partner. Four main themes emerged from the analysis: (1) a challenging start; (2) coming to terms with course requirements; (3) developing strategies; and (4) overall satisfaction with the course. Participants generally considered that their individual strengths and determination helped them to negotiate the many challenges they encountered during the course.this study indicates that students undergo a process of adjustment as they travel through the Bachelor of Midwifery course. The most critical transition phase appears to occur in the first year and students may require additional supports to assist their socialisation into both the university and their course. Particular needs identified include return to study skills for mature-aged students and counselling and support group needs generally. The provision of such supports may assist with the retention of students within the course and may contribute to overall student satisfaction.

publication date

  • 2014