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Voices from the coalface: The Impact of dedicated education units in nursing

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This chapter, in keeping with the Dedicated Education Unit principles of valuing everyone’s input, respecting and sharing their knowledge and experience, and learning from one another, presents 14 stories from people performing different roles in establishing, learning, teaching and working within differently structured Dedicated Education Units in different clinical contexts. It broadens the scope of this book by including experiences from Manukau Institute of Technology/Counties Manukau District Health Board Dedicated Education Units in Auckland, New Zealand. The stories complement the descriptions of Dedicated Education Units, from conception to sustainable management, in Chaps. (this volume) by adding a human element that gives insight into how different individuals experience the concepts and meanings of Dedicated Education Units in practice. After the editors briefly revisit what a Dedicated Education Unit is, students, new graduate Registered Nurses, Liaison Nurses, Clinical Nurse Consultants, Academic Liaison Nurses, Principal Academics, clinical coordinators and those in executive positions (e.g. heads of nursing, governance group members and heads of Health Boards) tell their stories. Each contributor demonstrates their engagement in, and belonging to, their Dedicated Education Unit. The stories highlight commonalities and differences among Dedicated Education Units and the benefits and challenges of involvement in this new clinical education strategy. Three major themes emerge: empowerment, a deep sense of valuing nursing education, and Dedicated Education Units providing the necessary time, practice and relationship development in clinical settings to prepare students to perform the role of Registered Nurse confidently and competently.




Bowden, M., Taylor, A., Nand, V., Moscato, S. R., Little-Reece, J., Panteleon, T., … Gordon, M. (2014). Voices from the coalface: The Impact of dedicated education units in nursing. In Clinical Learning and Teaching Innovations in Nursing: Dedicated Education Units Building a Better Future (pp. 143–182). Springer Netherlands.

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