Bartlett, M, Rees, EL and McKinley, RK (2017) 'Knowledge leech' to 'part of the team': students' learning in rural communities of practice. Education for Primary Care, 29 (1). pp. 5-10. ISSN 1475-990X

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BACKGROUND: Keele Medical School has a small accommodation hub for students placed within ten associated general practices in a predominantly rural area of England. Groups of up to eleven final year students spend fifteen weeks learning generic and transferable clinical skills in these practices. AIM: To explore the evolving perceptions on students on their experiences throughout their placements. METHOD: All ten students placed at the hub between August and December 2013 were invited to participate in focus groups in weeks zero, seven, and fifteen. Analysis was qualitative and thematic. RESULTS: Ten, five and eight students chose to participate in successive focus groups. Five themes were identified from the data; acceptance, learning opportunities, relationships, development, and injustice with a subtheme of isolation. CONCLUSION: The placements had a powerful impact on students' learning and development. Their perceptions changed from seeing themselves as 'knowledge leeches' to legitimate contributors to health care over the course of fifteen weeks. They did not recognise that managing perceived adversity led to personal development. This illustrates the need to both identify perceived adversity and explicitly signpost and scaffold life learning. The students described experiences which challenged them intellectually and offered them opportunities to recognise the breadth and complexity of general practice.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the accepted author manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via Taylor & Francis at Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Primary care; undergraduate medical students; community based medical education
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Primary Care Health Sciences
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Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2018 11:55
Last Modified: 07 Aug 2018 01:30

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