Student nurses' experience of preceptorship was the focus of this second part of a phenomenological study. The aim was to illuminate student nurses' lived experience of the preceptor-preceptee relationship on hospital wards. A phenomenological-hermeneutic analysis was made of tape-recorded interviews with seventeen student nurses. The interpretation process culminated in four themes, namely: (a) creating space for learning; (b) providing concrete illustrations; (c) exercising control and (d) seeking reflection. Each theme included sub-themes with internal variations. The theme 'creating space for learning' was understood as basic in relation to the other themes and as the foundation of student learning and preceptoring. The ongoing process of preceptoring meant that the preceptors acted as role models, were with the students and also exercised control. Control was directed both to patient safety and to student learning. The students' 'seeking reflection' included attempts to find peace and quiet either by themselves or with the preceptor. The reflection together with the preceptor facilitated the students' transformation of knowledge, from the specific situation to a general knowledge and increased the value of learning.