Students' perspectives of using the hub and spoke model to support and develop learning in practice



Millar L, Conlon M & McGirr D (2017) Students' perspectives of using the hub and spoke model to support and develop learning in practice. Nursing Standard, 32 (9), pp. 41-49.

The hub and spoke model is one approach to nursing students’ practice learning, which involves a base practice placement (hub), from which the student’s learning is complemented by additional activities (spokes). This model has been integrated into Edinburgh Napier University’s undergraduate nursing programmes since 2011, and it is considered to enhance practice learning.  Aim To explore the characteristics of the hub and spoke model that support nursing students’ learning and enable them to improve their understanding of a person-centred approach to care.  Method The study involved nursing students from two fields of practice – child health and mental health. A mixed methods approach was used, using a questionnaire and three focus groups.  Findings A total of 24 students completed the questionnaire, while 27 students participated in the focus groups. The questionnaire results indicated that participants were able to undertake spoke activities in their practice, which enabled them to understand communities’ issues and to better understand their learning competencies. Three themes emerged from the focus groups that encapsulated participants’ experience of hub and spoke learning in practice: value for learning, making connections, and organisations and systems.  Conclusion There were several positive effects on nursing students’ practice learning as a result of the hub and spoke model approach to practice learning. Students valued the option of undertaking a ‘different’ placement experience that offered them the opportunity to view connections to the wider patient healthcare journey and understand the influence of the community on patients’ health and well-being.

hub and spoke model; nurse education; nursing students; practice learning; professional development; research; student experience; undergraduate nursing programmes

Nursing Standard: Volume 32, Issue 9

Publication date25/10/2017
Date accepted by journal15/04/2016
PublisherRoyal College of Nursing

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Ms Margaret Conlon
Ms Margaret Conlon

Lecturer, Health Sciences Stirling