Delivering quality thanks to midwife teachers

29 Jul 2011 14:30:00.000


Midwife teachers play a unique role in ensuring newly qualified midwives are fit for practice according to new research by The University of Nottingham’s School of Nursing, Midwifery and Physiotherapy.

The Midwives in Teaching report (MINT) was commissioned by the Nursing and Midwifery Council as an independent, collaborative study across England, Wales and Scotland.

The report just published online found that students and newly qualified midwives valued the role of their midwife teachers in helping them transfer their learning and education into the workplace as a registered midwife.

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The MINT report is the first of its kind to evaluate how midwifery education is delivered and the contribution and impact of midwife teachers to the care provided by students and newly qualified midwives to mothers and babies. The findings will help to inform the regulator’s review of its pre-registration midwifery education standards which is due to start next year.

While the report found that the current education system produced competent midwives, it did make some recommendations to help enhance the experience for students.

Professor Diane Fraser, co-author of the report with Professor Mark Avis, said:

“Our research was able to pinpoint a need for teachers to be visible and accessible to both students and mentors in clinical practice to assist students when providing hands on care and monitor learning and assessment decisions. We found that the resource levels, including the number of teachers and the location of clinical placements often made this difficult.”

NMC Chief Executive and Registrar Professor Dickon Weir-Hughes said:

“Every expectant mother deserves a midwife who is fit to practise and able to deliver their child as safely as possible. This report shows that our current education model is producing new midwives who meet this demand.

“Midwife teachers play a significant part in this and I am pleased that the students recognise and value the knowledge and support they provide.

“However, it is important that we don’t become complacent and this report provides us with an evidence base about how we can continue to enrich a student’s learning experience in the future.”




Notes to editors:

 The University of Nottingham, described by The Sunday Times University Guide 2011 as ‘the embodiment of the modern international university’, has award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. It is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 75 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong (SJTU) and the QS World University Rankings. It was named ‘Europe’s greenest university’ in the UI GreenMetric World University Ranking, a league table of the world’s most environmentally-friendly higher education institutions, which ranked Nottingham second in the world overall.


The University is committed to providing a truly international education for its 40,000 students, producing world-leading research and benefiting the communities around its campuses in the UK and Asia.


More than 90 per cent of research at The University of Nottingham is of international quality, according to the most recent Research Assessment Exercise, with almost 60 per cent of all research defined as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Research Fortnightanalysis of RAE 2008 ranked the University 7th in the UK by research power. The University’s vision is to be recognised around the world for its signature contributions, especially in global food security, energy & sustainability, and health.

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Story credits

More information from: Professor Diane Fraser, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Physiotherapy, on +44 (0)115 82 30820 or Professor Mark Avis on +44 (0)115 82 30812

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