University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Using Death Cafés as a Method for Discussing Death and Dying with 3rd Year Student Nurses

Mitchell, Theresa, Lillyman, Sue, Nyatanga, Brian, Bruce, Mary and Brayne, S. (2021) Using Death Cafés as a Method for Discussing Death and Dying with 3rd Year Student Nurses. International Journal of Palliative Nursing, 27 (7). pp. 352-360. ISSN 1357-6321

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Background; Death Cafés are increasingly being held to facilitate discussions around death and dying and end-of-life issues with the public. They are thought to provide a safe, confidential and interactive space in which sensitive and supportive conversations about death and dying and end-of-life are shared.
Aim; To explore nursing students’ experiences of participating in a modified death café and its impact on their learning about death and dying.
Methodology; A qualitative interpretive approach was employed using face to face semi-structured interviews with a purposive sample of 3rd year student nurse volunteers. Thematic analysis was used to identify key themes.
Findings; Students viewed the modified death cafés positively, reporting that they were stimulating, informative and worthwhile for discussing sensitive topics related to death and dying. Five themes were developed from interview data; Anticipations of the death cafés, Timing of the death cafés within the curriculum, Facilitation, Trust within the group and getting involved, and Reflection on, and for, practice.
Conclusion: Students voiced a preference to disclose their feelings to an expert facilitator because they thought they might be judged by their nursing lecturers. Facilitation is critical to the self-scrutiny and disclosure by students, and the modified death café sessions achieved this.
Implications: It is expected that students may feel vulnerable in a death cafe, but it is important that vulnerability can be translated into strength, enabling openness and reciprocal sharing of inner thoughts and feelings about death and dying.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information:

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Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: death cafés, student nurses, communication, facilitation, death and dying, novel teaching method
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Divisions: College of Health, Life and Environmental Sciences > School of Nursing and Midwifery
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Brian Nyatanga
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2020 14:55
Last Modified: 26 Mar 2022 01:00

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