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Nursing and Midwifery

COVID-19 Supervision and Assessment

The COVID-19 pandemic has meant some changes to the supervision and assessment arrangements for nursing and midwifery students in practice in Scotland to enable them, if they so wish/are able, to support the health and care system during this time of emergency. This webpage has been set up to signpost or host some resources that students and their supervisors and assessors may find useful to access.

Student Support Guidance during COVID-19 Outbreak

The NMC have introduced emergency programme standards to enable more flexibility to ensure students get appropriate support and supervision in this challenging time. The NMC emergency programme standards for nursing and midwifery education can be accessed here

Student Support guidance for Scotland during COVID-19 Outbreak for medical, nursing and midwifery students which is based on NHS England national guidance has been endorsed for use in Scotland by the Chief Medical Officer, the Chief Nursing Officer, the Scottish Terms and Conditions Committee, the Nursing and Midwifery Council, and the General Medical Council. In summary it indicates that:

  • Nursing and Midwifery Students in year one will continue with their studies and remain on their programme. However, the nature of the programme will be adapted so that students will see their academic studies continue but their clinical placement time will be paused.
  • Nursing and Midwifery students not in first year and not in the final six months of their pre-registration programme will be given the option to opt into a revised programme structure of 80% in clinical practice 20% academic study.  This is voluntary and if students do not feel able to opt in to this they will be supported by their university to consider the options available to them.
  • Nursing and Midwifery students in their final six months of their pre-registration programme will be given the option to opt in to a revised programme structure whereby they move in to clinical practice during this emergency period. It will not be possible for students to be supernumerary during their time in clinical practice during this emergency situation, but they will receive appropriate support and supervision within an appropriate delegation framework.

You may wish to read the full document and a copy of this guidance can be found below:

Nursing and Midwifery and Medical Student Support Guidance

Delegation Framework

The NMC emergency programme standards indicate that a framework should be used to aid clinical decision making when delegating to those "non supernumerary" students who have opted into the revised programme structure when they are out in the practice learning environment.  The resources below outline the recommended delegation framework that should be used as a clinical decision-making guide when delegating in practice.  It will support practitioners who are returning to the register during COVID19 or existing practitioners to delegate effectively and safely to non supernumeray paid students who will be out in practice learning environments.

This framework is shared with permission from the Northern Ireland Practice and Education Council for Nursing and Midwifery Practice and is a framework for delegation of nursing and midwifery practice and is suitable for all healthcare practioners working in Scotland at this time.

The framework can be accessed here.  A pocket guide can also be downloaded for use and can be accessed here. This delegation framework can also be found on TURAS learn where tehere are a number of other delegation resources that health and social care practitioners may find useful during this time of service redesign.  Access at https//learn.nes.scot/28973/coronavirus-covid-19/delegation

Deciding to Delegate - a support resource for health professions across health and social care can be accessed on vimeo here

Deciding to Delegate - using the delegation framework in nursing practice - 3 scenarios can be accessed at https://vimeo.com/403694033

Essential Learning (Induction)

Those 2nd, 3rd and 4th year nursing and midwifery students who opt in to a revised programme structure will be paid for the contribution they will make to the workforce. As part of the employment process students require to undertake essential learning a copy of these requirements can be seen below.

Nursing and Midwifery Students Essential Learning (Induction)

Please note that this essential learning document signposted students to the latest versions of COVID-19 resources at time of publication on 21 April 2020. However, with evolving evidence emerging daily in relation to COVID-19, students are advised to review the Health Protection Scotland website at https://www.hps.scot.nhs.uk for the most up to date information. 

Please note that for students who received the 2nd April (version 1) of the Nursing and Midwifery Students’ Essential Learning (Induction) the 4 nations have since agreed to utilise the following guidance (available on the Health Protection Scotland COVID-19 site) associated with resuscitation:

COVID-19 Resources: Guidance for first responders and others in close contact with symptomatic people with potential COVID-19 https://www.hps.scot.nhs.uk/web-resources-container/covid-19-guidance-for-first-responders-and-others-in-close-contact-with-symptomatic-people-with-potential-covid-19/

The Nursing and Midwifery Students' Essential Learning (Induction) document will be updated as Health Protection Scotland guidance is updated.

Frequently Asked Questions for Practitioners and Students

A number of frequently asked questions from mentors and practice teachers with regards to supervision and assessment during the COVID-19 crisis can be found here

Frequently asked questions specifically relating to practice learning experiences within community teams in primary and integrated care have been developed in partnership with HEI representatives and practice placement partners.

The frequently asked questions for:

  • Those supervising and assessing pre registration nursing and midwifery students in community teams in primary and integrated care during the COVID-19 period can be found here.
  • Team leaders in community teams in primary and integrated care can be found here.
  • Students on placement in community teams in primary and integrated care can be found here.

Practice Supervisor and Practice Assessor Resources

The NMC emergency programme standards enable more flexibility to ensure students get appropriate support and supervision and may see the enactment of the Standards for Student Supervision and Assessment (SSSA) within Scotland prior to our original September 2020 date. In order to support this possible change the NMAHP Practice Education team have produced a shortened voiceover PowerPoint that provides an overview of the new NMC Standards of  Prroficiency for Nurses and Midwives and the Standards for Student Supervision and Assessment (SSSA). The powerpoint with accompanying notes can be accessed here.  The same presentation is also available in wevideo and vimeo format.

Please note that the students on paid placement during the COVID-19 crisis are to be assessed against the proficiencies, essential skills clusters and learning outcomes detailed in their ongoing achievement record (OAR).  Undergraduate programmes based on the Future nurse: Standards of proficiency for registered nurses and Standards of proficiency for midwifes do not begin in Scotland until September 2020 or September 2021.

Preparation for Practice Supervisors and Practice Assessors


This is an interim Practice Supervisor and Practice Assessor Learning Resource, developed in partnership by the national expert working group led by NHS Education for Scotland (NES) to support the implementation of the new standards for student supervision and assessment from the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC, 2018).

The units are intended as learning materials to support local training and preparation of practice supervisiors and practice assessors. The inteded audience are those involved in the support, supervision and assessment of pre and post-registration nursing and midwifery students.  During this COVID19 period the learning resource has been made available in pdf format with some of the content truncated.  The full version will be available as an online module on TURAS Learn later in the year.  

Teaching and Learning in Practice - a resource to support clinical practitioners


Teaching in the clinical envrionment may be about supporting a colleague to use new equipment, learn a new procedure or develop underpinning theory around an aspect of care they are delivering.  Understanding some principles of teaching practice and theory can help ensure your teaching is effective.  One such resource is available here.