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Achieving a Sense of Place: A qualitative case study of 'place making' on an undergraduate nursing satellite campus

conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-24, 15:01 authored by Danielle Williams, Nicholas ArnottNicholas Arnott

This paper will examine space and place in the context of undergraduate nursing students completing a fast-track degree on a satellite university campus. Being a relatively new campus with a degree of isolation from other schools and broader university resources, we believe that achieving a ‘sense of place’ is an important pre-condition for positive student engagement, experience and learning success.

Our contemporary understanding of health and health care is informed, in part, by a focus on the multifaceted relationships between sociocultural, environmental, economic and political determinants, and how these influence, for better or worse, the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities. A similar paradigm also plays out in health professional education. In the preparation of undergraduate nursing students, we have recognised that various social and environmental determinants can either enhance or impede learning and teaching success.

Creating a positive learning environment is an aspirational goal of learning and teaching. Our proposition is that while the tangibles of ‘space’ (built and natural environment, facilities and technology) are an important part of this, it is a sense of ‘place’ (identity, connection, relationship and belonging) that has the greatest potential to enhance learning experience and outcomes.

This paper will present a qualitative case study of our place-making endeavours on a satellite university campus. While physical space is considered, the paper is primarily concerned with the lived, social and imaginative spaces of higher education. This case study discusses the observations and reflections of a small community of practice from a first-year teaching team; and the results of a community needs assessment ‘foot survey’ undertaken by students as part of the undergraduate curriculum.


Publication title

6th International Nurse Education Conference


School of Nursing

Event title

6th International Nurse Education Conference

Event Venue

Brisbane, Australia

Date of Event (Start Date)


Date of Event (End Date)


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