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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter April 18, 2022

Learning on the periphery: a modified Delphi study of a nursing student communities of practice model

  • Daniel Terry ORCID logo EMAIL logo , Blake Peck ORCID logo , Alicia J. Perkins and Wendy Burgener



To develop a contemporary student placement model to address current placement challenges, impact student learning, and alleviate supervisor burden.


A modified Delphi technique was used to seek opinions, insights, and creative solutions.


A draft Communities of Practice placement model, based on a systematic literature review, was introduced to a heterogenous expert panel (n=12). A contemporary placement model was developed and refined via video conference and email over three rounds.


Despite initial reluctance concerning a new model, participants became conversant with the concept of peer-to-peer learning, where incidental, albeit essential, learning and support occurs between students, which also supports supervising staff. Greater flexibly and student screening were also incorporated to enable greater learning, confidence building, and reflection. The model’s success is contingent upon students working within their scope of practice and provides a contemporary approach to best responds to student, education provider, and health service needs.

Corresponding author: Daniel Terry, PhD, School of Health, Federation University Australia, Ballarat, VIC, Australia, E-mail:


The authors acknowledge the facilities, scientific, and technical assistance of the School of Health at Federation University Australia and support provided by Central Highlands Rural Health.

  1. Research funding: None declared.

  2. Author contributions: All authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this manuscript and approved its submission.

  3. Competing interests: Authors state no conflict of interest.

  4. Informed consent: Informed consent was obtained from all individuals included in this study.

  5. Ethical approval: The local Institutional Review Board deemed the study exempt from review.


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Supplementary Material

The online version of this article offers supplementary material (

Received: 2021-10-27
Accepted: 2022-03-28
Published Online: 2022-04-18

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