Eileen Wass

Tell us about your role as a Work Based Assessor for the University of Leeds. What do you do?

I help coordinate the learning experience of our students; ensuring they have the opportunity to develop their clinical skills in a supervised and supporting environment. I meet regularly with the students both formally and informally to verify they are on track to complete their log book and pass their end of year assessments.

I also attend regular work based assessor meetings at the university to make sure we remain up to date with the current PTP curriculum and touch base with other mentors from within West Yorkshire.

What can students expect to learn when on placement with you?

Students will learn and gain experience in a wide range of cardiac diagnostic procedures. We mainly focus their learning on their logbook requirements in order to ensure the specific skills required each year are met. They will develop their communication skills by direct observation of others and practical experience with patients. Observation of other more complex techniques is provided but not at the expense of their immediate needs.

The placement is seen as a place where students can gain confidence and relate knowledge learnt in the classroom to real-life settings.

What do you expect from students when they are on placement at your cardiac physiology department?

I expect the student to be punctual, respectful and behave in a professional manner whilst dealing with patients and colleagues. They need to be open and honest and be a pro-active learner. It is essential they understand the importance of patient confidentiality, both in the work setting and at home.

How will our students benefit, when back in the classroom, from a placement at Mid Yorkshire NHS Trust?

Putting theory into practice and vice versa is an essential learning tool.  Seeing procedures performed in the clinical setting can help to provide a greater understanding of complex theories. When students return to the classroom I would hope their exposure to the investigations they are studying would help cement their knowledge.

What benefit will time spent with you have to our student's future careers?

Students attend three different placements during their degree. Each hospital will provide different challenges to the students both with respect to the staff they will interact with and the organisation of the departments.  Their placements will allow them the opportunity to learn the complex issues of dealing with the general public in a caring and compassionate manner whilst being supported by ‘seasoned’ colleagues.  All departments tend to be busy, students will learn time management, how to be flexible and begin to appreciate the changing nature of the job.

What is your favourite part of being one of our Work Based Assessors?

I love my job and personally have a passion for learning.  It is important to me that this comes across to the students.  I love having the opportunity to be involved in their development and help shape the attitudes of future physiologists. 

What does a Cardiac Psychologist do?

We perform and interpret a variety of cardiac investigations which are used by the Medical team to help diagnose and treat patients.

The tests are varied in the time taken to perform, their complexity and the level of interpretation required by the Physiologist.

Our role is developing with new skills being learnt and undertaken constantly; our position within the multidisciplinary team is developing and expanding.

The underpinning knowledge required however hasn’t changed; we still need the basics no matter what investigation you do, from ECG to complex device follow-up.

How easy is the commute to Pinderfields General Hospital?

Pinderfields is in Wakefield which is on both a bus and train route from Leeds.

The nearest train station is however 15-20 minute walk away.

There are two buses from Leeds which go directly past the hospital:

 446 – hourly – journey time approx. 50-55mins.

 444 – ½ hourly – journey time approx. 50-55 mins.

What is it like working at Mid Yorkshire NHS Trust (Pinderfields Site)?

The trust is situated on three sites, Pinderfields, Dewsbury District and Pontefract.

Students are only offered places at either Pinderfields or Dewsbury.

Pinderfields provides acute Cardiology and it is where the Coronary care unit and Catheter lab are based.  The hospital is a busy place to work, with a good range of non-invasive and invasive tests and procedures offered. The department is structured with specialist lead physiologists covering imaging, devices, non-invasive and catheter lab. We actively encourage continual learning with support provided to complete the BSE (British Society of Echocardiography) and BHRS (British Heart Rhythm Society) exams.

What is the town/city of Wakefield like?

Wakefield is a Cathedral city located within a few miles of both the M1 and M62.

The Hepworth Gallery is situated just outside the town centre which is open Tuesday-Sunday and bank holidays.


The exhibitions are continually changing and they provide workshops and family events throughout the year.

Wakefield has numerous country parks within a short drive/bus trip from the centre including Newmillerdam Country Park, the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and Pugney’s Country Park.

The town centre is home to the Theatre Royal, the Trinity Walk shopping centre and over 30 bars and clubs.