6. Themed Days

6.1. Day 1: Introduction to the Placement

Preparatory work

In preparation for their first placement day, students should have:

  • Prepared questions to ask a team member, focusing on finding out about their training, role and responsibilities within the Primary Health Care Team, and reasons for working in Primary Health Care.  


  • To welcome the students to the practice and introduce them to their GP tutor, their tutor and the practice team. 
  • To clarify learning outcomes for the course.


Learning Outcomes

By the end of the day, students should be able to:

  • Know how to contact their tutor and/or members of their tutor group
  • Describe the overall aims of the course
  • Interview a member of staff about their role and responsibilities within the primary care team and report on findings from the interviews 


Example timetable

9.30 – 10.30

Welcome & Introductions

Virtual tour of surgery (this could be live or pre-recorded)


10.30 – 10.45


Tea break

10.45 – 11.45

Icebreaker activity


11.45 – 12.45

We have to talk about COVID-19


12.45 – 13.45



13.45 – 14.30

Group activity – Who’s who? Make a list of roles within the primary health care team and suggest what they do?


Plan questions for interviews with practice team members


14.30 – 15.30

Meeting the practice team - interviews with team members in small groups (if there are team members who are unavailable this could be pre-recorded)


Each small group feedbacks to group – this puts real names and faces to the Who’s who? list


Includes tea break


15.30 – 16.00

General Q&A/Feedback on day 1

Set homework for next session



Suggested Activities

  • Introductory activities - meeting tutors and peer group; ice-breaker activity; impact of COVID-19 on placement and virtual learning; overview of course including aims, assessments and student expectations; ground rules discussion outlining group etiquette and professional behaviour expected of students i.e. time keeping, attire, contacting tutor/practice if unable to attend; collecting contact details for each student; other miscellaneous e.g. set up WhatsApp group.
  • We have to talk about COVID – see below
  • We have to talk about COVID:

    Some ways to start

    ·       Q: How do I see this pandemic?

    ·       Q: How has the world changed?

    ·       Q: How has my world changed?

    ·       Q: How have we/I changed? (even the smallest things)

    ·       Q: What strengths have got/what challenges/where have I drawn solace or anchorage or renewal?

    Students and tutors could write their answers down and choose whether they wish to share anything with the group.

    ·       Activity: bring object, picture or music that represents your experience of the pandemic.

    ·       Self-care and self-compassion; introduce these terms and discuss the importance of developing self-care and how this is key to providing care to others. Look at facilities and services open to NHS staff to support their wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    ·       Signposting; QMUL student support services.

  • Who’s who? Identify different members of the practice team. Interview with member of the Primary Care Team about their role.


Questions for students to consider

  • Who did you meet from the practice team today? Did anything you found out about that person’s role surprise you?  Were you aware that there was such a role?  Were you aware that so many different people were part of the primary health care team?