Clinical Research Placements

Clinical Research Network: Greater Manchester provides student nurses with access to clinical research placements and the practice is strongly encouraged across all CRN: Greater Manchester’s NHS Trusts and universities.

For example, MFT provides structured research placements for nursing students from all three local universities. This placement programme has evolved from humble beginnings. In 2008 it offered work experience to college and pre-nursing course students through the Trust-based NIHR Manchester Clinical Research Facility (CRF). By 2012 it had developed a programme for first year student nurses on the University of Manchester degree pathway. And now a Trust-wide programme designed to meet the learning needs of first, second and third year students from all three local universities is in operation. Gareth Williams, a second year student nurse from the University of Manchester, describes his placement experience; “It’s been really interesting and very different to being on a ward. It’s mentally stimulating – I’ve come across a lot of different conditions – and the environment’s calmer! I was a little apprehensive at first as I thought I’d not be learning as many clinical skills, but that’s not been the case at all. I’ve been taught them on a one-to-one basis.”

I landed on my feet with my research placement. I was treated like one of the team and was exposed to lots of different research topics which gave me a really good grounding

The Trust also operates a hub and spoke model. The CRF forms a hub and 18 clinical division research teams form the spokes. It offers four six-to-eight week hub placements a year and countless spoke placements, varying from a morning to a few days. Helen Pidd, the CRF’s Operational Director, believes the success of the scheme is down to the development of the Trust-wide hub and spoke model embedded within clinical areas that are supported by research personnel who are keen to teach and enthuse the next generation of clinical research nurses. Find out more about the Manchester CRF.

The role of the Clinical Research Nurse:

Watch a short animation describing the role of the Clinical Research Nurse, created by the CRN


In this video, Ali Mortimer, Lead Nurse Research and Development has recorded the presentation she gave to a group of nursing students on the role of the Clinical Research Nurse.