Quality assurance of placement supervision and placement learning environments: development of a new supervision measure for use as part of a trainee survey

Neil Millar, Claire Ann Banga, Nicola Cogan

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

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Abstracts should be up to 250 words exclusive of the title. It should not include references and should be written in either the past or present tense. Where appropriate to the topic, please include objective/aim, background, method, results and conclusion.

Aim: To develop a valid measure of confidential feedback on clinical placement environment and placement supervision from the perspective of applied psychology trainees in Scotland.

Background: All NES training Programmes have mechanisms for quality assurance of clinical placement supervision and learning environments. These could be complimented by use of a confidential measure of trainees’ experiences over a wider scope to enable benchmarking across Programmes, NHS Boards and departments. A new psychometrically sound measure for gathering trainee’s experience of supervision in postgraduate psychology Programmes was developed.

Method: Following a literature review and an expert concept mapping exercise, a pool of 107 items were generated. These were assessed by trainees for clarity and relevance and a 54 item measure was derived. This pilot measure was administered to postgraduate psychology trainees in Scotland (n = 160). A further administration (n = 187) was used to examine convergent and predictive validity. Other items were generated to gather the trainees’ views of the quality of the placement environment.

Results: Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses were used. Five factors were identified and labelled ‘supervisory working alliance, ‘establishing and protecting time, ‘reflective functioning and emotional awareness, ‘safety and trust’ and ‘skills development ‘.Analyses revealed the measure to have good convergent and predictive validity.

Conclusion. The NES tool offers a psychometrically sound measure of trainees’ perspectives on the perceived effectiveness of clinical placement supervision. The measure is, therefore, a promising tool for use in research, clinical, and training settings. The process of planned reporting mechanisms, benchmarking and challenges of implementation will be described.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 14 Nov 2018
EventGroup of Trainers in Clinical Psychology Annual Conference 2018 : Deeply connected? Innovation, Technology, Interaction & Change - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 12 Nov 201814 Nov 2018


ConferenceGroup of Trainers in Clinical Psychology Annual Conference 2018
CountryUnited Kingdom


  • clinical placement education
  • psychology trainees
  • placement environment

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