Article Title

Promoting student belongingness: 'WANTED' - the development, implementation and evaluation of a toolkit for nurses


Objective: Literature suggests that the need to belong influences health and well-being, behavioural, emotional and cognitive responses. This paper describes the impending development and validation of a toolkit for nurses to create the experience of belongingness with a team approach, for student nurses undertaking a clinical placement.

Setting and Subjects: The design of the toolkit will be developed from a selected Delphi panel process involving nursing experts’ experience and opinions. The toolkit will then be distributed to nurses in selected clinical areas for use during periods of clinical placements.

Primary Argument: Clinical placements are essential for professional socialisation in which nurses provide compelling role models for how to think, feel and act. However, students have often identified a sense of alienation through poor clinical experiences. The need to belong and be part of a team exerts a powerful influence on cognitive processes and behavioural responses. The absence of meaningful interpersonal relationships can result in failure to develop optimal clinical reasoning and critical thinking skills to manage patient care safely.

Conclusion: More needs to be achieved than to simply justify the core attributes of a good clinical learning environment. Understanding of the key role that clinical leaders and supervisors exert to create a belongingness environment can influence positively the attitude of other staff towards students. For a valued positive clinical learning experience to become the benchmark of best practice, it requires a structured process, a toolkit to enable nurses to comprehend the concept of belongingness and to support them in embedding this model into their role of supervision.


belongingness, clinical environment, toolkit, nurses, student nurses, Delphi method

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