Fiona Hermann – Midwifery Tutor, Centre for Health and Social Practice
I work as a senior academic staff member teaching midwifery to students. It’s a three year degree but has the same hours as a four year programme. This means I am very involved in facilitating learning with students, visiting students and midwives in placements, as well as maintaining my own small practice as a midwife – a requirement of the regulatory body for midwives.
My day starts with checking and responding to emails – often from students around assessments or happenings in clinical practice, or maybe from my colleagues asking for feedback on a situation. I may also be in front of the class of students – lecturing, discussing, arguing, debating and answering questioning. Feedback on assessment is something I’m really interested in and I’m trying to make small changes to have this really targeted and useful for students learning – assessment FOR learning, not only OF learning. There is a fair bit of pastoral care and helping students cope with some of the complex issues that midwifery brings and often meet with students to discuss their placements and develop learning goals.
I always have at least one good belly-laugh with colleagues. We are a small team of women with great senses of humour! I am usually also thinking about marking to take home as well as what’s going on at home with my family. I’m (almost) always looking forward to the next day.
I love the team I work with and the students. I love the ‘ah ha’ moments when students get it – some fact or understanding that makes sense. I love talking about birth and babies and really enjoy sharing the students’ development into the role of midwifery. I really appreciate not being on call after many years of doing that!