For five years, beginning in April 2015, the University of East Anglia (supported by Health Education England) developed a national Values Charter, an online tool to support learning and the internalisation of the NHS Values for all students undergoing professional education in the East of England, under Health Education England. The School of Health Sciences had already generated a Professionalism Charter for pre-registration students across three programmes.
The universities offering pre-registration programmes in East Anglia are:
- University of East Anglia
- University of Suffolk
- University of Hertfordshire
- University of Essex
- Anglia Ruskin University
- University of Bedfordshire
The working group includes representation from each collaborating university.
UEA developed an online resource providing easy access to information about professional competencies based upon professional values. It allows students to record their progress towards, or information about, their experiences within specific areas of competence. It also offers a set of narratives that the student can use as evidence of their competence in any given area.
A pilot of the first level of the Values Charter was evaluated both internally within UEA and externally with collaborator universities, as well as Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen. The responses were very positive. The findings showed that the content is useful and relevant, and the style of presentation enjoyable and varied enough to accommodate different learning styles. Students showed an excellent level of engagement, suggesting that it is worth continuing the work following the current framework.
Dr Rosemarie Mason, academic project lead, said:
‘This is an exciting project that is really getting to the heart of celebrating, enhancing and promoting professional ideals at their best’.
Mark Francis-Wright from the University of Essex added that identifying core professional values drew attention to the fact that ‘we share so many common beliefs across a wide range of professions’.