The Continuity of Care Experience and Reflective Writing: Enhancing Post-Practicum Learning for Midwifery Students

  • Linda SweetEmail author
  • Janice Bass
  • Kristen Graham
Part of the Professional and Practice-based Learning book series (PPBL, volume 25)


Post-practicum is a time when students have an opportunity to share, compare and engage critically in considering how their clinical experiences impact on their learning and future roles as professionals. Reflective practice has merit in facilitating this process. This project aimed to enhance student’s capacity for reflective practice through reflective writing to optimise the learning potential of longitudinal practice-based midwifery experiences. A design-based approach was used to implement an educational intervention to enhance students’ reflective writing. Midwifery students at Griffith University were familiar with and had been using the Bass Model of Holistic Reflection for the previous 3 years. Students at Flinders University were unfamiliar with the model and through the project were provided with guidance and resources on its use to guide their post-practicum reflection. Students’ written reflections completed before and after the introduction of the model at Flinders University were evaluated and compared with the writing from students at Griffith University. Results show that Flinders University students’ scores pre-intervention ranked poorly as evidence of reflective capacity and were lower than the scores of their counterparts at Griffith University at the same time. Post-intervention, all Flinders University scores improved, whilst students from Griffith University, who had been using the Bass Model throughout their entire programme, demonstrated developmental improvement in their reflective capacity across time. Use of the Bass Model improved all components of reflective writing including self-awareness, awareness of sources of knowledge, reflection and critical reflection, evidence-informed practice and critical thinking. This project has demonstrated that use of the Bass Model improved student’s capacity to reflect on practice as evidenced through their writing and is a post-practicum pedagogy with the potential to enhance learning.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Flinders UniversityAdelaideAustralia
  2. 2.Griffith UniversityGold CoastAustralia

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