Braun V, Clarke V Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qual Res Psychol. 2006; 3:(2)77-101

Creswell JW, Creswell JD Research design: qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches. 2018;

Department of Health and Social Care. 2018. (accessed 11 August 2022)

Harvey S, Uren CD Collaborative learning: application of the mentorship model for adult nursing students in the acute placement setting. Nurse Educ Today. 2019; 74:38-40

RePair reducing pre-registration attrition and improving retention report. 2018; 1-114

Health Education England. 2019. (accessed 25 July 2022)

Hellström-Hyson E, Mårtensson G, Kristofferzon M-L To take responsibility or to be an onlooker. Nursing students’ experiences of two models of supervision. Nurse Educ Today. 2012; 32:(1)105-110

Hill R, Woodward M, Arthur A Collaborative Learning in Practice (CLiP): Evaluation report. 2015;

Hill R, Woodward M, Arthur A Collaborative learning in practice (CLIP): evaluation of a new approach to clinical learning. Nurse Educ Today. 2020; 85

Leigh J, Littlewood L, Lyons G Reflection on creating a coaching approach to student nurse clinical leadership development. Br J Nurs. 2019; 28:(17)1124-1128

Markowski M, Bower H, Essex R, Yearley C Peer learning and collaborative placement models in health care: a systematic review and qualitative synthesis of the literature. J Clin Nurs. 2021; 30:(11-12)1519-1541

Markowski M, Yearley C, Bower H Collaborative learning in practice (CLiP) in a London maternity ward-a qualitative pilot study. Midwifery. 2022; 111

McNiff J: Routledge; 2013

Nursing and Midwifery Council. 2018. (accessed 25 July 2022)

Tweedie K, Yerrell J, Crozier K Collaborative coaching and learning in midwifery clinical placements. Br J Midwifery. 2019; 27:(5)324-329

Underwood S, Green J, Walton R, Hackett K, Cooke J, Pegg M, Armstrong C Evaluating the impact of a coaching pilot on students and staff. Br J Nurs. 2019; 28:(21)

Wareing M, Green H, Burden B “Coaching and peer-assisted learning” (C-PAL) - the mental health nursing student experience: a qualitative evaluation. J Psychiatr Ment Heal Nurs. 2018; 25:(8)486-495

Whitmore JLondon: Nicholas Brearley Publishing; 2017

Williamson GR, Bunce J, Kane A, Jamison C, Clarke D Investigating the implementation of a collaborative learning in practice model of nurse education in a community placement cluster: a qualitative study. Open Nurs J. 2020a; 14:(1)39-48

Williamson GR, Kane A, Plowright H, Bunce J, Clarke D, Jamison C ‘Thinking like a nurse’. Changing the culture of nursing students’ clinical learning: implementing collaborative learning in practice. Nurse Educ Pract. 2020b; 43

Implementing collaborative learning in practice in a London maternity ward

02 September 2022
12 min read
Volume 30 · Issue 9


A collaborative learning in practice pilot study in a maternity unit in a London Trust has been carried out. Collaborative learning in practice is a model for supervising students where they work in small groups under the guidance of a practice supervisor. The pilot found that the model is a possible approach to increasing placement capacity that provides an equally enriching, if not improved, learning experience. Improvements were seen in peer support, confidence and responsibility, teamwork skills, new learning opportunities and being better prepared for practice after graduation. Reflecting on the experience of implementing the first cycle of the pilot, this article provides guidance to healthcare education providers for implementing the model in practice placements. The guidance offers a modified model, establishing key personnel as collaborative learning in practice champions and providing adequate preparation for students, staff and the environment.

In 2018, the Department of Health and Social Care (2018) announced plans to expand the numbers of registered midwives working in the NHS. To facilitate this growth, Health Education England (HEE, 2019) recognised the need to grow clinical placement capacity by 25% across England by 2022. In recent years, clinical placement capacity has been completely filled by students in training, and a range of pressures is being exerted on the system, including staff turnover, the availability of appropriate practice supervisors and practice assessors and variations in the birthrate between services (Markowski et al, 2021).

The work of the Pan London Midwifery Expansion Placement project, led by HEE (London) supported an initiative to introduce a pilot at the Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust to organise midwifery students’ learning in practice, known as collaborative learning in practice (CLiP). CLiP originated from the University of East Anglia and was successfully implemented first for nursing students and later for midwifery students at the local partner trust, James Paget University Hospital (JPUH) (Hill et al, 2015; 2020; Tweedie et al, 2019). A visit to JPUH inspired the research team, led by the University of Greenwich, to explore the feasibility of transferring the model to a London maternity unit serving a very different demography and operating a service with a high turnover of women, which was frequently running at full capacity (Tweedie et al, 2019).

Register now to continue reading

Thank you for visiting British Journal of Midwifery and reading some of our peer-reviewed resources for midwives. To read more, please register today. You’ll enjoy the following great benefits:

What's included

  • Limited access to our clinical or professional articles

  • New content and clinical newsletter updates each month