Student Perceptions of How Their Didactic Interprofessional Education (IPE) Influenced Their Interprofessional Collaborative (IPC) Clinical Experience Practice


Purpose: Interprofessional education (IPE) is not only a CAPTE requirement for physical therapy programs, but it is a World Health Organization initiative to promote effective, quality patient-centered care.1,2 Student reflections from their IPE didactic course indicate their greater appreciation for interprofessional collaboration (IPC) practice.3,4 The purpose of IPE is to provide students with opportunities to collaborate with students from other health professions, with the goal that they will develop interprofessional behaviors in clinical practice. Their ability to participate in IPC in clinical settings is anticipated and possibly enhanced because of their didactic exposure to IPE. However, little is known if and how didactic experiences influence their clinical behavior and views about IPC clinic practice.


Description: Investigators initiated, developed and delivered an IPE course on chronic pain management early in the fall semester that included graduate students from: Doctor of Physical Therapy (3rd year), Master of Occupational Therapy (4th year), Athletic Training (1st year), and Community Mental Health Counseling (1st and 2nd year). The chronic pain course was offered within the DPT program. The other three health professional program students participated in our course through a designated module in one of their required courses. The DPT students then completed an eight, and twelve week clinical rotation, which ended about month before graduation.


Outcomes: The preliminary data collected as part of the chronic pain course indicated that students were beginning to develop IPE competencies in: roles and responsibilities; communication; ethics and values; and, teamwork.5 The investigators are conducting a focus group with 8 to10 purposefully selected DPT students, who have completed their last clinical experience before graduation to understand their perceptions of how the IPE didactic course influenced their clinical experiences and progression toward IPC clinical practice.

Conclusions/Relevance to the conference theme: Through the Looking Glass: Transforming Physical Therapy Education

Relevance: Analysis of data from focus group will provide confirmation of how the IPE didactic course influenced their final 8 and 12 week clinical experience practice. It will be compared to the IPE competencies that they reflected about at the end of the fall course; and how they are progressing toward IPC clinical practice. There is little evidence about the effect of IPE didactic content on the progression to IPC in clinical practice. Currently, it is difficult to understand the clinical influence that occurs from IPE didactic experiences; because there are no objective tools to measure its effect. The outcome of this pilot study will guide the refinement of this IPE course with modular interprofessional components; and begin to identify effective IPE models and objective items to measure for didactic IPE content that can be recognized in IPC clinical practice.


1. Commission on Accreditation for Physical Therapy Education. Accreditation Handbook. 2016. Accessed April 1, 2017

2. World Health Organization. Framework for Action on Interprofessional Education and Collaborative Practice. 2010. Accessed April 1, 2017

3. Bagatell N & Broggi M. Occupational therapy and physical therapy students’ perceptions on short-term interprofessional education model. AOTA Education Special Interest Section Quarterly. 2010. 24(2): 1-4. Retrieved from:

4. Hadjistavropoulos HD, Juckes K, Dirkse D, Cuddington C, Walker K, Bruno P, White G, Ruda L, & Bazylewski MP. Student Evaluations of an Interprofessional Eduction Experience in pain management. Journal of Interprofessional Care. 2015. 29(1): 73-75. Doi: 10.3109/13561820.2014.917613

5. Interprofessional Education Collaborative. Core Competencies for Interprofessional Collaborative Practice: 2016 Update. Available at: Accessed April 1, 2017.

BACK to Abstract Results

  • Control #: 2747834
  • Type: Posters
  • Event/Year: ELC2017
  • Authors: Dr. Pamela Reynolds, Ms. Andrea Kessler
  • Keywords:

BACK to Abstract Results