International Practicum: Not just another overseas jaunt - Supporting learning objectives and the development of graduate attributes
Place of Publication
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science
School of Medical and Health Sciences
The nursing profession faces ongoing challenges related to the globalization of nursing education, research, and practice. An online review of undergraduate nursing course offerings and opportunities demonstrates that universities strive to broaden their nursing experience as part of the education experience. Universities and schools of nursing work hard to offer international practicum to students and there are financial implications and risks associated with overseas travel. A literature search using Library One which includes CINAHL Plus, OVID, ProQuest Nursing & Allied Health Source, and PubMed demonstrated limited description in the literature on whether or not international nursing practicum placements achieve the learning objectives designated in an undergraduate nursing unit, as well as whether or not these practicums support the development of graduate attributes for nursing students. This discussion paper will be one of the first to fill this identified gap in the literature as a reflection on four overseas placements for undergraduate nursing students and how the placements met the stated learning objectives and desired graduate attributes. The Nurse Academics involved in the international practicums critically reflected on the activities of the students and determine the placements support the intent of the units and they help student nurses develop a cross-cultural and international outlook which underwrites provision of patient- and family-centred care for a multicultural population such as that of Australia.