Four-strands of qualitative study understanding the perspectives of students, clinicians, senior managers and leaders on Collaborative-Learning-in-Practice (CLiP) on physiotherapy placement

Josephine Morris, G Corp, A Robinson, N Wyndham-Birch, David Wilson, Holly Royle, M Modrate

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Keywords: Collaborative, Placement, Learning Purpose: To explore the perspectives of physiotherapy students, practice educators in outpatient and acute-ward settings, and senior managers and leaders surrounding the implementation of CLiP for physiotherapy placements. Methods: Four strands of qualitative research studies were carried out utilising semi-structured interviews recorded via Microsoft Teams. The resulting transcriptions written bureaucratically were thematically analysed with a detailed hierarchical-audit-trail for validation and quality-assurance. Thirty-six participants were recruited using purposive sampling. This consisted of nine-physiotherapy undergraduate students (three first-year, three second-year and three third-year students), nine-physiotherapy practice educators in an NHS and private outpatient-department, ten-physiotherapy practice educators in an NHS acute-wards and eight-senior managers and leaders across the UK. Results: Four-overarching-themes from students’ perspectives: Positive attributes of CLiP; Multi-factorial aspects determining CLiP as a success; Moulding students to become autonomous practitioners, Cultures and beliefs influencing acceptance of CLiP. Three-overarching-themes from outpatient physiotherapists: Space and accommodation, Student level and competence, Flexibility. Three-overarching-themes from physiotherapists in the acute wards: Holism, Effect of individuality, Implications of context. Three-overarching-themes from managers and leaders: Adoption curve, Student development, Quality of care. Conclusion(s): This study highlights that the benefits of CLiP would outweigh the challenges of successful implementation in practice. CLiP could be beneficial for students to develop their physiotherapy skills allowing more students to attain placements. CLiP has good potential in addressing current issues for which traditional-style placements fall short. One major issue is the lack of availability with placements due to an increased number of universities incorporating physiotherapy courses. This will aid the NHS’ long-term-plan (2019) to recruit more physiotherapists. CLiP has the potential to offer improved learning experiences being coached by all members of a multidisciplinary-team. The hierarchical title should not reflect the experience and knowledge that professionals can give. They also felt that learning from one mentor can only teach what they know instead of learning from a team where the learning potential is much larger leading to a more holistic practitioner. A collaborative approach to placements, along with its coaching method would lead to a better-developed physiotherapy student by empowering them to take charge of their own learning and the ability to learn not only from an educator but from peers too. Therefore, better preparing them to become autonomous practitioners. Impact: CLiP could be possible given the flexibility of collaborating with universities and practice-partners. The recommendation is that CLiP is implemented with a clear framework, careful planning and well-managed risks considering individual placement requirements. CLiP's success will be dependent on the uptake of the Trust. With new interventions, there will be resistance, some members will invite change, whereas others will resist it. Training teams will be of the utmost importance to attain adherence to the CLiP model furthering the opportunities it could bring and its continued success. CLiP could facilitate quality-of-care with more eyes-and-hands to aid patients in their recovery. Students are extra vigilant when seeing patients due to their inexperience and desire to succeed although no known study has recorded this yet. Furthermore, more research should be conducted to determine the effectiveness of CLiP for physiotherapy students. Funding acknowledgements: Nothing to declare.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e29-e30
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2022

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