Ms Irene Murray
I started my career as a Registered General Nurse specializing in gastro-enterology at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh where I worked full time for nearly 2 years. Following midwifery training at the British Hospital for Mother and Babies in Woolwich, SE London, I held a position as a Staff Midwife for nearly 2 years. From that post I went to Israel to work in a mission hospital in Nazareth run by the Edinburgh Medical Missionary Society (EMMS) that serves a large Arab-Israeli population. The plan was to go for 2 years but I remained there for 18 years. During that time I completed my Midwife Tutor’s Diploma (MTD) at Jordanhill FE College in Glasgow and returned to Nazareth equipped to teach nursing and midwifery. The role over the years (and through the Gulf War) was varied and challenging, combining clinical midwifery with midwifery management, and teaching on both midwifery and nursing programmes.
I maintained my UK midwifery registration throughout my time in Israel and on leaving my post in Nazareth undertook a one year full time ‘top-up’ BSc (Hons) Midwifery programme at the University of the West of England. On completion of the degree I worked briefly as a Bank Midwife in the Princess Anne Wing in the Royal United Hospital in Bath, and as Research Midwife on the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), also known as ‘Children of the 90’s’ (see details at http://www.bristol.ac.uk/alspac/ ), a world-leading birth cohort study conducted in Bristol. Following this I secured a post in Inverness as a Lecturer on the Midwifery Diploma programme at the College of Nursing and Midwifery (which became the University of Stirling during the same year).
From 1996 until 2013 I was part of the small midwifery team on the Highland Campus of the University of Stirling and responsible for all aspects of the full time Midwifery Diploma in Higher Education. In 2008 that programme developed into the full time 3 year BSc Midwifery programme. This involved curriculum development, teaching, assessing, planning and audit of clinical placements, mentorship updates and supervision of practice learning experience. In 2013 the Midwifery programme was terminated due to changes in the provision of midwifery education in Scotland. At that point I took a sideways step from midwifery back into into nursing and, following a Return to Practice (RTP) programme in 2013 took part in all aspects of the BSc Nursing programme including module coordination of a 3rd year Module, and coordination of international exchange placements in Austria and Israel. Following the take-over of the Highland Campus of the University of Stirling by the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) in 2018, and the Scottish Government’s recognition of the urgent need for midwives in the north, a new Pre-Registration Shortened (20 months) Midwifery (PG Dip) programme was launched at UHI in January 2019. During the preceding year the consensus curriculum was developed and I was involved in all aspects of that development including University Approval events, placements, modules, timetables, assessment and road-shows for midwives in clinical placements.
I have edited and latterly co-edited a chapter in the last four editions of Myles Textbook for Midwives, the most recent edition being as follows:
Murray,I. and Hassall, J. (2020) ‘Change and adaptation in pregnancy’. In: Myles textbook for midwives, 17th edition, ed by Marshall, J. and Raynor, M.(eds). Edinburgh, Elsevier Ch.10. (to be published May 2020)
- BSc (Hons) Midwifery
Membership of Professional Organisations:
- Royal College of Midwives
- University and College Union
I continue to teach the maternity nursing component of the nursing programme but my main role is in facilitating, teaching and assessing in all semesters of the Pre-Registration Midwifery (PG Dip) programme, as well as being Personal Academic Tutor to a proportion of the current cohort of 18 students.
I am currently Module Lead for Semester 2 Module ‘Midwifery Care of Mother and Baby with Complex Needs’ and the corresponding Clinical Practice of that semester.
In 2019 I revalidated with the NMC on two Registers thus maintaining my registration as a Registered Nurse and a Registered Midwife.
Student Experience Activities
From 2013 to 2018 I was the Highland Coordinator for International Elective Placements shared with the University of Stirling’s Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport. This role involved collaborating with colleagues in the recruitment and selection of 3rd year students across three campuses for two of the three placement opportunities that were currently available with Paracelsus University, Salzburg, Austria, and the School of Nursing at the Nazareth Hospital, Israel. I liaised with the elective coordinators on both sites for incoming and outgoing students, arranged and supervised placement experience on both sites and accompanied the group of students going to Israel. This included cultural and language preparation before departure, day to day support while in Nazareth, tourist activities within Israel and evaluation of the experiences. Parallel provision was made for the Israeli and Austrian students on their in-coming elective visits to Inverness. These elective opportunities ended at the time of the transition from University of Stirling to University of the Highlands and Islands. I am now involved in a group headed by the Department of Nursing and Midwifery Lead for Internationalisation exploring opportunities for electives for 2nd year nursing students in the forthcoming years.
Teaching and Learning
- Midwifery / maternity nursing
- International exchange visits