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BPCLE Knowledge Base

Help and advice on understanding the BPCLE Framework and using BPCLEtool

The BPCLE Framework

What is the BPCLE Framework?

The Best Practice Clinical Learning Environment (BPCLE) Framework provides guidance in relation to six key elements that are the underpinnings of a quality clinical learning environment. Each element is necessary but not sufficient for achieving best practice and a number of the elements overlap or are inter-related. The six key elements are:

  1. An organisational culture that values learning
  2. Best practice clinical practice
  3. A positive learning environment
  4. An effective health service-education provider relationship
  5. Effective communication practices
  6. Appropriate resources and facilities

Each element includes a set of sub-objectives and the framework encourages organisations to explore the most effective and appropriate mechanisms to achieve them.

The BPCLE Framework actually incorporates three major components, namely the framework itself, a resource kit (the BPCLE Resource Kit) and a performance monitoring framework (the BPCLE PMF).

These three components were developed and refined over a number of projects conducted between 2008 and 2012. Stakeholders consulted during the process included education providers, health service staff and learners, who provided information relevant to a broad cross-section of professions, health service settings and geographical locations.

More information about each component can be found elsewhere in this section and in the video tutorials.

Watch an introductory tutorial on the BPCLE Framework

Who is the framework for?

The framework is relevant to all those who deliver and are responsible for the provision of clinical education and training in health professional disciplines, but is particularly targeted to the health and social care settings in which clinical education and training take place.

Therefore, although education providers are encouraged to read the framework and to work with their health service partners to assist with implementation, the BPCLE Framework primarily provides guidance to staff within health services who have responsibility for the organisation, management and delivery of clinical education in those settings.

Benefits of implementing the BPCLE Framework

Implementation of the BPCLE Framework is expected to bring a number of direct benefits to health services, including:

  • Improvements to the clinical learning environment, resulting in better experiences for all learners and for staff involved in delivery of education and training.
  • Efficiencies and improvements in clinical education activities and processes, resulting in less wasted effort by staff.
  • Better relationships between health services and their education provider partners, resulting in more support for health service staff in the delivery of clinical education and improved teaching programs that produce work-ready graduates.
  • Enhancement of the organisational learning culture, resulting in improved patient care and health outcomes.

In addition to these improvements relating to the delivery of clinical education and training, health services will derive a number of benefits from undertaking the processes associated with implementation of the BPCLE Framework, including:

  • Organisational learning across and within health professions, leading to better relationships between disciplines and between staff.
  • Increased awareness and understanding at all levels of the organisation of the costs and workloads associated with clinical education.
  • Greater awareness of the processes associated with delivery of clinical education, which will in turn drive innovation and improvement.
  • Empowerment of clinical education staff, through their involvement in review and planning activities and including them in the selection of appropriate indicators and objectives for targeting improvements.

A set of fact sheets and briefing documents to assist organisational coordinators with informing key stakeholder groups about implementation of the BPCLE Framework is available here.

Lessons from the pilot

Implementation of the BPCLE Framework was piloted in 11 health services across Victoria (one per Clinical Placement Network) in 2011-12. The pilot sites included large metropolitan acute health services, regional and rural hospitals, community health, general practice/primary care services and aged care settings. The pilot provided an opportunity to trial an implementation process and tools, and also to evaluate the usability and functionality of the BPCLE Resources Kit and PMF.

Aside from providing valuable feedback on the tools and protocols to inform their further development, the pilot produced five key findings:

  1. Implementation of the BPCLE Framework can be achieved on a multidisciplinary, whole-of-organisation basis, even for very large health services.
  2. The same implementation protocol and tools can be used regardless of the type of health service, its size or geographical location.
  3. Implementation of the framework provides an important organisational learning exercise that also serves as a mechanism for developing inter-disciplinary understanding and cooperation.
  4. The process requires someone within the health service to coordinate the implementation effort.
  5. The buy-in of senior management of the organisation is a significant enabler for successful implementation of the framework.
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