The education offer within healthcare has grown over recent years with many clinical and non-clinical experts delivering speciality training for internal staff. Continuous Professional Development funding and Workforce Development funding from Health Education England has focused on supporting NHS organisations to expand their internal offer for their own staff and from other providers.
At Guy’s and St Thomas’, the internal provision of education has expanded across professions as staff take up work-based learning modules and short courses to upskill and develop themselves personally and professionally.
In 2019 a group of educators from across clinical and non-clinical professions got together to explore introducing a foundation teaching course at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust. The PGCert was available to staff who were in full-time education roles, however it was apparent that there were many staff who must undertake educational activity as part of their role with no access to courses on delivering training. The Education Faculty designed a foundation course spanning six months that included various sessions including the principles of Teaching and Learning, reflections and planning a teaching session, and thus the ‘Teaching our Teachers’ (ToT) Course was launched.
The faculty wanted the students on the course to be able to get recognition for their work to enable them to gain work-based learning credits and/or become an Associate Fellow of Advance HE. Considering this we based the ToT Portfolio on the UK Professional Standards Framework (UKPSF). Our vision was to be able to offer staff the opportunity to have their teaching experience recognised and belong to a prestigious higher education organisation.
We approached Advance HE with the purpose of securing a contract for a number of Fellowship applications, combined with the provision of two writing workshops with a UKPSF Consultant, to support the staff members who needed it. The first application workshop has taken place with very good feedback from staff. Staff are encouraged to register with Advance HE through the portal and start the application process. All resources are available to them to access to understand the process and evidence their teaching experience in the correct way to support them to be successful. Two referees are required and we encourage staff to speak to their line manager and also their mentor on the ToT course. For those staff who haven’t done the ToT course, we ask them to speak to colleagues who they deliver education alongside to support them in their application.
We have made the investment for our staff to recognise their invaluable input into the teaching and learning of their colleagues, students and staff from other professions. Many of our staff teach at higher education institutions as their clinical expertise is required to run courses externally. Staff had to adapt their methods of delivering education throughout the pandemic which has resulted in a more hybrid model moving forward. This has provided opportunities to explore how certain elements of teaching are delivered and maximising on the face-to-face experience. By offering Fellowship we acknowledge their contribution and place prestige on their position in the Trust.
We have made this offer available to our more experienced educators, the majority of whom hold a PGCert, and they have been able to assess which category they should apply for. Many of our experienced educators are undertaking Fellowship and Senior Fellowship applications. The more staff who take up this offer within the Trust, the more it enables us to quality assure our educators against the Professional Standards Framework.
Staff who work in healthcare are in the unique position to be learning continuously as they grow and develop in their roles. Education delivery is pivotal to supporting individuals, teams, departments and services to meet the needs of the organisation. I would encourage all NHS trusts to explore Fellowship with Advance HE to acknowledge the breadth of education delivery that takes place in the healthcare setting.
Professional Standards Framework 2023 launch
The PSF 2023 will be launched on 31 January 2023. Join us at the launch event to hear from speakers drawn from the global HE community about the importance of the key changes to the PSF and what they will enable. Find out more and book your place