On April 12, 2012 the North American Registry of Midwives published revised clinical requirements for obtaining the Certified Professional Midwife credential. Because of these very substantial changes, we have redesigned our student program, with a planned start date for the new programs of June 2013. The information below is the most up-to-date information we have on the programs. Because they are it is still under development, this information is subject to change. Please direct questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
The BetterBirth University offers high intensity, accelerated programs that will help you become an excellent midwife. They are based on the North American Registry of Midwives requirements to obtain the Certified Professional Midwife credential. In addition to the prenatal, labor and delivery, postpartum, and newborn experiences required for NARM, we teach, assess, and sign off skills in the Practical Skills Guide for Midwifery and NARM’s Comprehensive Skills, Knowledge, and Abilities Essential for Competent Midwifery Practice Verification Form 201.
This program is designed for students who want to take advantage of our amazing Workshop Week to learn and sign off skills, but do not want (or are not able) to stay longer and obtain clinical experiences. Workshop Week is held every three to four weeks for both our clinical students and other students around the country. It is a jam-packed, 6-day, 8-hour-a-day week of skills training on the most often-requested and difficult-to-acquire skills for student midwives. Students are required to complete online study modules on each skill PRIOR to arriving for Workshop Week, so do plan enough time before your scheduled week to get this done. We recommend a minimum of 3 months lead-time to complete study modules. Once your application is complete, we will e-mail you information on how to access our modules.
NOTE: The study modules for Workshop Week require the use of the following textbooks, which are all on the NARM Reference List (required reading for all NARM candidates). Because the NARM exam is based on the information in these books, it is well worth the expense to purchase them, and you should find you use them for many other parts of your education besides Workshop Week. If you are already enrolled in a school, it is likely you already have many, if not all, of these books. You can order any of the books you are missing by clicking the book’s title below.View Book List
Workshop Week Schedule
The following table lists the schedule of topics taught at Workshop Week:View Schedule for Workshop Week
Below are lists of all skills you can expect to sign off if you satisfactorily complete all modules and workshops in Workshop Week. Skills can be signed off in the Practical Skills Guide for Midwifery, NARM’s Comprehensive Skills, Knowledge, and Abilities Essential for Competent Midwifery Practice Verification Form 201, or both. The NARM skills list requires separate signoff of both the “knowledge” and “skill” components of each skill on the list. All skills listed as taught during Workshop Week can be signed off on the knowledge portion of the skill (assuming you pass all modules and perform adequately during the workshop). For some skills, the skill portion can be signed off at the end of Workshop Week (assuming adequate performance during workshops). However, there are some skills taught during the week which must be practiced in real life on real clients in order to achieve competence, and for these skills you will not be signed off for the skill after simply completing the workshop. Instead you will receive a certificate of completion of the workshop for those skills. This may be useful for you in working with other preceptors to show them you have received training on these skills so that they will allow you to practice them to competency on their clients. If you are enrolled in our Workshop+Clinicals program, we will do our best to get you to competence at these skills and get them signed off during your clinical stay.
During Workshop Week you and the other students will be practicing skills (including vaginal exams, catheterization, venipuncture, injections, IV placement, etc.) on each other. This is a requirement. We know it's not fun to have a midwifery student practice her first IV or urinary catheter on you. She feels the same way about you practicing on her. But neither of you will master your skills if you don't allow the other to practice. It is also important to understand how clients feel when you are performing skills on them. You really get a good sense of it when it's your turn to receive those procedures. If you are unwilling to practice on other students or have them practice on you, please do not apply.
We accept a maximum of 6 students for any Workshop Week, 2 of whom are students enrolled in our Workshop+Clinicals Program. We provide housing for Workshop+Clinicals students, but not for Workshop Week only students.
This program adds 3 or 4 weeks of clinical experience to Workshop Week to enable students to practice the skills they have learned and to obtain clinical experiences required for NARM certification. All Workshop Week requirements apply (including the requirement to complete online study modules prior to arrival). If all workshops and modules have been successfully completed during Workshop Week, you can expect to begin working in the Primary Under Supervision role the following week, and we will try to get you signed off on as many of the remaining “Certificate Only” skills (listed above) as possible. Depending on your clinical experiences, there may be other skills you can sign off as well.
In our clinical program you will gain experience in both the home and birth center settings under the tutelage of several outstanding midwives. We practice according to the midwives model of care, and our goal is to make every birth a great experience for the family involved. We express our gratitude to the families who are willing to help our students by keeping their quality of care our number one priority.
Your stay with us will be an intense learning experience. We aim to provide not only sufficient numbers of experiences, but exceptional quality of experiences as well. We focus on excellence. We expect to provide exceptional teaching to you, and we expect exceptional performance from you. Through this unique model, you’ll learn more with us in a few weeks than you likely would in several months at home.
We accept only two students for any 3- or 4-week term, during which each student is assigned to either our Salt Lake or Orem clinic. Each student attends clinic (prenatal and postpartum visits) in her designated location. About half of our deliveries are for clients on our midwife program, and you should not expect to serve in the role of primary at these births (or at their associated prenatal and postpartum visits), although you will be expected to assist even if you don’t “need” the experience for NARM. Our clinical students serve as primary under supervision for the other half of our clients who have signed up for our student program in their assigned location (Orem or Salt Lake). During the last week of the clinical term we will sign off any skills at which you have achieved competency during your stay. Housing is provided for students only (not for families).
We normally deliver 15-25 babies a month, although the number can vary more widely. So, on an average month of 20 total births, about 10 would be student program births (that is, available for students to serve as primary), and on average, about half of those (5) would be in each location. So you would likely attend about 20 births total, 15 as Assistant Under Supervision and 5 as Primary Under Supervision. Remember that numbers fluctuate and transfers occur. Therefore, we do not guarantee any particular number or types of experiences during your stay, but we will try very hard to get you what you need.
Things You Should Know
Keeping Up With The Schedule: Our program is intensive, and designed to get you skills and experiences as quickly as possible while making you an outstanding midwife. You must complete online study modules prior to your arrival, and you must be prepared to work very hard while you are here. We reserve the right to not sign off skills, workshops, or experiences we do not feel you have satisfactorily completed. Once clinicals begin, you will be on-call 24/7.
Bringing Families: If you intend to bring your family with you for our Workshop+Clinicals Program, be aware that you must provide your own housing rather than staying in our student apartment. We can help you arrange for housing, but ultimately finding and paying for it are your responsibility. We are happy to recommend the following hotels in the area:
We will expect you to make your program responsibilities top priority while you are here.
Personal Transportation: If you enroll in our Workshop+Clinical Program, you must have a car at your disposal at all times during your Clinical Time. You can expect to travel an average of 75 miles per day, although this can vary.
Coming Back: The first time you attend clinicals at BetterBirth you must attend Workshop Week. If you choose to return for more clinical experience, you need not repeat Workshop Week. You may also choose to return for clinicals if you attended Workshop Week only (without the clinical component) on a prior visit.
Do we break for holidays? We do not hold Workshop Week over major U.S. holidays, but clinical terms are held regardless of holidays. While we do not generally see clients for routine visits on holidays, babies are born every day of the year. Because of the tight nature of our schedules, postponements for holidays would negatively affect other terms and result in the loss of important birth experiences for you. Be sure to check the calendar carefully before applying for a term that occurs over holidays that you must be absent for, and do not apply for that term.