During their clinical practice, nursing students learn to manage patient safety through their experiences, emotions, and interpersonal relationships.
To explore contextual and mechanistic factors that facilitate a sense of emotional safety for learning in nursing students, particularly regarding patient safety events experienced during their placements.
A descriptive qualitative study using narratives and thematic analysis.
A university in Northern Italy.
Undergraduate nursing students recruited through purposive sampling.
Twenty cases relevant to the present study were selected from the “Sharing LearnIng from Practice for Patient Safety” (SLIPPS) project database containing 100 narratives collected using the patient safety learning Event Recording Tool. The data were analysed using thematic analysis according to Braun & Clarke's methodology. The themes that emerged from the thematic analysis were rearranged in Context-Mechanism-Outcomes.
Students identified clinical practice experiences as important occasions for their personal and professional development. Emotional safety and tutoring were the elements that effectively “govern” the students' learning and development process.
Emotional safety is key for nursing students because it enables them to constructively overcome any relational and emotional tensions that may develop during their clinical placements.