School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Sciences
Field of Research:
Medical and Health Sciences; Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
Professor Moira Williamson; Dr Olav Muurlink
Doctor of Philosophy
Vertical Violence in the Midwifery Student Experience
The incidence of workplace violence, more commonly referred to as workplace bullying has increased dramatically in recent years and is now a major global public health concern. Healthcare settings provide a fertile environment for such behaviours to flourish, particularly where power differentials are commonplace. In particular, the student-mentor relationship is characterised by power imbalances and provides the opportunity for repeated exposure to abuse. This in turn impacts staff and student wellbeing, patient safety, staff absenteeism, turnover and productivity, all of which are well documented. This study was framed by a review of the literature that exposed gaps in knowledge concerning how workplace violence behaviour impacts Australian midwifery students, their ability to continue with their studies, their confidence levels, subsequent skill development, and decisions to practice upon graduation.
Why my research is important/Impacts
Rarely is the voice of the midwifery student, who is currently experiencing, or has experienced workplace violence whilst on clinical placement in Australia, articulated. This is, therefore, a significant void in the knowledge concerning this phenomenon. The proposed research is situated within descriptive phenomenology and seeks to explore the midwifery student’s lived experience of being a victim of workplace violence whilst on clinical placement.