Well done. After all that worthwhile preparation, you are ready and awaiting the arrival of the student.

Now the fun begins!

4. Review the student learning plan

As mentioned in Section One, it is important that time during the orientation period is dedicated to developing and negotiating with the student their learning plan containing specific personal learning goals.

The student may have already given some thought to their learning goals prior to arriving and together you can work with the student to review and refine those goals and strategies in respect of the context of the placement.

Your role is to support the student to develop learning goals that are practical and realistic within the practice environment and time frame. It can be useful to encourage the student to link their learning goals with items on the SPEF-R.

Learning goals should be SMART:

specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and have a timeframe

The student is responsible for establishing a process of ongoing review and evaluation of progress towards the goals and at cessation of the placement, for reflecting on goal achievement and to begin making goals for the next clinical learning experience.

It can be helpful to review these personal learning goals and their achievement and/or any necessary modifications in regular supervision times with the student.


Student Learning Plan
  • Assist student to review and refine learning goals
  • Should be practical and realistic to context and timeframe
  • Provide a framework for student to take responsibility
  • Allow clear communication between student and CE
  • Allow framework for monitoring progress
  • Review should be ongoing and regular
  • Modify if necessary
  • Signed by clinical educator and student

​(Dunwoodie et al., 2006)


Example of a Student Learning Plan: Goals and Format


Learning Need



Implementation and




To learn group presentation and facilitation skills for running client educational program

To plan, deliver and evaluate a client education session on relaxation for chronic pain clients, independently, by the end of week fi ve

Week 2–3

To research current approaches to chronic pain management and application of relaxation and integrate fi ndings into an education session plan, discussing content with supervisor.

To familiarise self with functional and psychological implications of chronic pain by attending one or more education sessions with chronic pain client group and interviewing one or more clients re. current strategies and role of relaxation.

Literature review completed and discussion of research fi ndings presented at supervision session and OT meeting.




Week 3–4

To practice effective teaching of relaxation technique to colleague/supervisor





By Week 4

To independently plan a one hour group session that incorporates education about pain management and relaxation for chronic pain and practice of relaxation techniques, and to develop formal and informal methods of evaluation.





Week 5

To independently deliver the one hour group session with distant supervision

To effectively evaluate the group session by gaining feedback (formal and informal) from client group, supervisor and self-reflection.



TIP     When developing learning goals, include:

  • An action word (complete, assess, give)
  • The item (a report, an assessment, a literature review)
  • The conditions (without CE support, using available resources
  • The standard (within the first three weeks of the placement)

When negotiating the Student Learning Plan it is a really good time to consider the preferred learning style of your student. This will guide you in providing effective delivery of information and knowledge in a way that accommodates the learning style whilst supporting the learning needs of the student and their progression toward their goals. Learning styles will be discussed further in Part Four: Approaches to clinical education.