The midwifery pre-registration programme of study is a demanding undertaking as it prepares students for the stressors and complexities of the role of the qualified midwife. Additionally, there are ‘pinch points’ during each academic year where the pressures of assessments both in practice and theory can lead to students feeling overwhelmed and unable to cope. Whilst multiple submissions due on or around the same time may seem excessive, with my ‘academic’s hat’ on I can offer a justification for timings, namely students can’t be assessed on what they haven’t learned, which inevitably leads to a heavy assessment schedule towards the end of each academic year. Previous articles have discussed the importance of student midwives’ being supported to develop resilience during their training to cope with the increasing and ever more complex demands of their chosen career (Power, 2016) and have provided ‘Survival Guides’ to help navigate the early stages of the course (Power, 2015a) and for first labour ward placements (Power, 2015b). More recently university support systems for student midwives with additional needs have been explored (Power and Murray, 2017). This article will complement existing literature by suggesting self-help techniques such as relaxation, exercise and making use of existing support networks, along with signposting to useful online resources for students to access during particularly stressful times of their training.
- midwifery pre-registration
- emotional support