Inter-Professional Education Curriculum

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Designing learning programs to sustain and foster Inter-professional Education is a complex operation and many different solutions have been implemented around the world. One starting point can be identified in the definition of the main dimensions which need to be taken into account when designing inter-professional learning.
Parsell and Bligh (1999) have organized these dimensions in four key clusters:
1. Relationships between different professional groups (values and beliefs which people hold). This dimension takes into account attitudes concerning professional identity, stereotypical views about each other, and the historical legacy about status and professional knowledge.
2. Collaboration and team-work (knowledge and skills needed). This
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(2009) :
1. Identify mechanisms for the development of health professional curricula that embed IPE as a central component of the curricula.
2. Identify approaches for effectively graduating students with developed inter-professional capabilities.
3. Explore approaches to embedding inter-professional practice as a core component of health professional practice standards.
4. Review existing IPE programs for what has been learned and for what can be adapted to existing and new IPE initiatives.
5. Design and implement a nationally coordinated program of research that is responsive to local conditions and requirements.
6. Contribute to the development and implementation of a national IPE knowledge management strategy.
Another interesting summary that describes some critical elements for Implementing Inter-professional Education has been outlined by Buring et al. (2009), where it is suggested to:
• Identify inter-professional education (IPE) as a goal of the college/school.
• Identify administrative and faculty champions at the college/school to lead and support IPE
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Freeth et al. (2005) describe different types of interactive education: for example, IPE curricula in which seminars and conventions are included; situations in which case studies are solved together by students of different backgrounds; moments of learning based on the solution of problems (PBL). The authors suggest a combination of different kinds of IPE in order to motivate the students.
The different kinds of IPE programs that are going to be described in this section all fit in these broad clusters but vary in the structure and the implementation. However, before starting with the presentation of some experimentation of IPE, it is important to outline that there are some barriers to the implementation of the programs. Being aware of these obstacles allows building more reliable and valid IPE projects.
A first type of barriers can be organizational; there can be problems a) in scheduling classes in order to have students of different faculties all together in the same place; b) in the flexibility of the curricula; c) related to “turf battles” between professionals (Curran, Deacon, & Fleet,
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