A longitudinal review of attitudinal outcomes of interprofessional education curriculum at Memorial University

Vernon Curran, Olga Heath, Brenda Kirby

Abstract


Background Interprofessional education (IPE) occurs when members (or students) of two or more health and/or social care professions engage in interactive learning activities to improve collaboration and/or the delivery of care. The Centre for Collaborative Health Professional Education, Memorial University has overseen the introduction, expansion and coordination of IPE curriculum at the pre-licensure education level across health and social care professional programs at Memorial. This IPE curriculum combines small-group case-based learning, standardized patient (SP) interaction, large-group panel activities and practice-based interprofessional learning experiences. The overall goal of the curriculum approach has been to promote interprofessional collaboration in health and social care delivery. Objectives A longitudinal review of attitudinal and satisfaction outcomes of a pre-licensure IPE curriculum approach that involves pre-clinical and clinical interprofessional learning experiences for medicine, nursing, pharmacy and social work students. Methods A longitudinal baseline survey examining attitudes towards interprofessional teamwork and IPE has been distributed to pre-licensure students across health professional programs. Students have also been asked to complete evaluation surveys following their participation in IPE activities. Results Students from across professions showed an increase in attitudes towards interprofessional teams following involvement with IPE programming. Female students and students reporting prior experience with IPE report higher mean scores towards interprofessional teamwork. Overall mean student satisfaction scores across IPE activities have increased gradually over time as a result of instructional modifications in response to student and faculty feedback. Greater student satisfaction has been reported for interactive and authentic learning activities such as case-based and SP learning. Conclusions Memorials IPE curricular approach involves interactive interprofessional learning that promotes interprofessional collaboration. High levels of student satisfaction and positive attitudes towards interprofessional teamwork suggest IPE has been integrated successfully within health professional education curriculum at Memorial University. The approach supports the principle of early-to-late exposure to elements of interprofessional learning and IPE which is integrated with core curriculum.

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