Colleen Ryan

Colleen Ryan
School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Sciences
Field of Research:
Medical and Health Sciences; Education
Professor Margaret McAllister; Professor Donna Lee Brien
Student Type:
Doctor of Philosophy

Contact Details

Research Details

Thesis Name

Professional Development for clinical facilitators: Exploring, Understanding, Innovating and Evaluating.

Thesis Abstract

Best practice preparation of nurses depends on the integration of theoretical and work-place learning. Clinical facilitators are key to this university-clinical partnership. This thesis takes a multi-pronged approach to explore, understand and develop innovative learning experiences for clinical facilitators. The first study explores tensions, constraints and best practice in clinical facilitation. The second study develops a research and self-assessment tool so that clinical facilitators can assess their own capabilities and so that interventions can be appropriately evaluated. The third study engages clinical facilitators in a process of reflection, design and evaluation of a targeted professional development experience.

Why my research is important/Impacts

Clinical facilitators are a vital resource in the development of safe effective nurses, yet the role they play and their development needs are not widely understood. This series of studies will generate new knowledge about the actual and potential practice of key facilitators of work-integrated learning in nursing within Australia. Results will inform appropriate professional development designed to inspire excellence and empowerment in clinical facilitators.


Uniting Health Care Queensland