Graduating midwifery students’ preferred model of practice and first job decisions : A qualitative study

Journal article


Kuliukas, Lesley, Bayes, Sara, Geraghty, Sadie, Bradfield, Zoe and Davison, Clare. (2021). Graduating midwifery students’ preferred model of practice and first job decisions : A qualitative study. Women and Birth. 34(1), pp. 61-68. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wombi.2020.07.005
AuthorsKuliukas, Lesley, Bayes, Sara, Geraghty, Sadie, Bradfield, Zoe and Davison, Clare
Abstract

Objectives
To explore and describe the preferred model of practice and first job decisions of final stage midwifery students from three Western Australian universities.

Design
Qualitative descriptive.

Setting
Three Western Australian (WA) universities offering courses leading to registration as a midwife.

Participants
Twenty-seven midwifery students from undergraduate and postgraduate (pre-registration) courses.

Methods
Data were collected from recorded interviews and focus groups. Thematic analysis of interview transcripts was used to identify commonalities. Data saturation guided when recruitment ceased and final sample size was achieved.

Findings
Participants’ preferred model of maternity care was influenced by learning about and witnessing both autonomous midwifery practice and collaborative care during their studies. The greatest influence was clinical experience, with most preferring a continuity of midwifery model (CoM) but first consolidating their practice in a public hospital. Most students reported that they would not choose a private hospital as their first option. Work/life balance was also considered, with some accepting that family commitments and a need to work close to home may prevent them from choosing a CoM model.

Conclusion and implications
Although many Australian midwifery students start their midwifery course with preconceived ideology of their eventual workplace, the influences of their educators, clinical placement environment, preceptors and continuity of care experience relationships with women helped determine their final direction. To provide students with the experiences to become woman-centred autonomous practitioners it is important for universities and all maternity care providers to carefully consider their responsibility in how they influence midwifery students in education and practice.

Keywordsstudent midwife; models of midwifery care; employment choices
Year2021
JournalWomen and Birth
Journal citation34 (1), pp. 61-68
PublisherElsevier Ltd
ISSN1871-5192
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wombi.2020.07.005
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85089447317
Research or scholarlyResearch
Page range61-68
Publisher's version
License
All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online16 Aug 2020
Publication process dates
Accepted19 Jul 2020
Deposited01 Sep 2021
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