Inter-professional Education Lesson Study for Health Professions Students

Authors: University of Wisconsin- La Crosse Health Professions Department
Faculty: Virginia Gronwaldt OTR, Ph.D., Barbara Johnson PT,
Ph.D., MSPH, Sandra Sieck, MD, Michele Thorman PT, DPT, MBA Disciplines/Fields: Occupational Therapy, Physician Assistant and Physical Therapy Submission Date: Lesson conducted April 10, 2015; Final report submitted June 6, 2015. Course Name: This lesson was incorporated into PTS 620, PAS 647 and OT 775.

Course Description: This lesson study’s goal was to engage in a systematic process to
design, instruct and assess learning outcomes related to interprofessional education of health professions students (OT, PA and PT students). The objective of the lesson study was that upon its completion, health professions students would be able to begin to demonstrate core competencies for inter-professional collaborative practice including: 1. Values/ Ethics for inter-professional practice
2. Roles/ Responsibilities
3. Interprofessional communication
4. Teams and teamwork

Abstract: Health Profession Department students from the OT, PA and PT
programs participated in a 2 hour inter-professional education lesson
designed to foster team working and decision making skills which are
essential for clinical practice. The activity required students to explore
the scope of profession, their unique educational backgrounds,
clinical specialty areas and professional roles on the patient care
team. Through use of a structured lesson plan which included guided
questions and a case study, students were challenged to define roles
and interventions unique to their respective discipline and areas
where their roles blended with other disciplines. Three outcome
measures were used to assess students’ perceptions of their roles on
an inter-disciplinary team, student engagement in the learning activity
and evaluation of the lesson.

Eighty-five physical therapy (PTS), occupational therapy (OTS) and
physician assistant (PAS) Health Professions students participated in
an Interprofessional Education (IPE) case study learning activity
during which they discussed the specific roles and responsibilities of
their professions. Several measures were used to assess students’
participation and evaluation of the learning activity and their
perceptions regarding the value of interdisciplinary health care teams.
Most of the students reported valuing interdisciplinary collaboration
and thought it improved health outcomes and resulted in improved
patient satisfaction. During the case study learning activity, all the
students verbally participated, discussing the roles and
responsibilities of their specific professions, and no differences were
found across disciplines. PAS were more often (100%), and OTS
were least often (19%), identified as exhibiting leadership behavior
during the case study learning activity, whereas, PTS were identified
as exhibiting this behavior 37% of the time. 97 – 100% of the
students reported that the learning activity helped them understand
the need for effective communication among health care
professionals, the need for interprofessional collaboration, and the
roles of PT, OT, and PA. Students suggested that in the future more information regarding the roles of healthcare providers other than PT, OT, and PA in patient/client care and specific values and ethics necessary for
interprofessional practice should be included in the IPE case study
learning activity.

Inter-professional Education Lesson Study for Health Professions Students Final Report