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1.  Impact of Abbreviated Lecture with Interactive Mini-cases vs Traditional Lecture on Student Performance in the Large Classroom 
Objective. To compare the impact of 2 different teaching and learning methods on student mastery of learning objectives in a pharmacotherapy module in the large classroom setting.
Design. Two teaching and learning methods were implemented and compared in a required pharmacotherapy module for 2 years. The first year, multiple interactive mini-cases with inclass individual assessment and an abbreviated lecture were used to teach osteoarthritis; a traditional lecture with 1 inclass case discussion was used to teach gout. In the second year, the same topics were used but the methods were flipped. Student performance on pre/post individual readiness assessment tests (iRATs), case questions, and subsequent examinations were compared each year by the teaching and learning method and then between years by topic for each method. Students also voluntarily completed a 20-item evaluation of the teaching and learning methods.
Assessment. Postpresentation iRATs were significantly higher than prepresentation iRATs for each topic each year with the interactive mini-cases; there was no significant difference in iRATs before and after traditional lecture. For osteoarthritis, postpresentation iRATs after interactive mini-cases in year 1 were significantly higher than postpresentation iRATs after traditional lecture in year 2; the difference in iRATs for gout per learning method was not significant. The difference between examination performance for osteoarthritis and gout was not significant when the teaching and learning methods were compared. On the student evaluations, 2 items were significant both years when answers were compared by teaching and learning method. Each year, students ranked their class participation higher with interactive cases than with traditional lecture, but both years they reported enjoying the traditional lecture format more.
Conclusion. Multiple interactive mini-cases with an abbreviated lecture improved immediate mastery of learning objectives compared to a traditional lecture format, regardless of therapeutic topic, but did not improve student performance on subsequent examinations.
PMCID: PMC4315211  PMID: 25657376
active learning; individual readiness assessment test; instructional design; pharmacotherapy; teaching and learning
2.  Active-Learning Assignments to Integrate Basic Science and Clinical Course Material 
To develop, implement, and evaluate active-learning exercises requiring the integration and application of pathophysiology, medicinal chemistry, pharmacology, and therapeutics knowledge of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis to formulate therapeutic recommendations for patients with musculoskeletal disorders.
Two team-based case study exercises, one evaluating a patient with osteoarthritis and the second, a patient with rheumatoid arthritis, were developed, incorporating material and questions from pathophysiology, medicinal chemistry, pharmacology, and therapeutics. The learning assignments were implemented in a required pharmacotherapy module.
Student learning was evaluated using performance on the team-based case study exercises and on 2 examinations. A standard student course evaluation was used to assess students' impressions of the learning activity. The mean student grades for the osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis activities were 9.1 and 8.9, respectively, on a 10-point scale. The majority of students indicated that the learning exercises were more than adequate to excellent in helping students learn.
The addition of active-learning activities was successful in teaching pharmacy students the knowledge needed to formulate therapeutic recommendations for patients with musculoskeletal disorders.
PMCID: PMC2972513  PMID: 21088724
team-based learning; case-based learning; active learning; osteoarthritis; rheumatoid arthritis; integrated courses
3.  Pharmacy Students' Participation in a Research Experience Culminating in Journal Publication 
To examine factors that influenced doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students to collaborate with faculty members, preceptors, or others on scholarly activities that resulted in publication of an article in a pharmacy journal, and whether this experience influenced their consideration of a career in academic pharmacy.
A 17-question survey instrument was e-mailed to student authors of papers published between 2004 and 2008 in 6 pharmacy journals. Responses were analyzed to determine factors influencing student participation in research and whether the experience led them to consider a career in academic pharmacy.
Factors about their participation in the scholarly activity that respondents found valuable included personal fulfillment and making a contribution to the literature. Respondents indicated they were more interested in a career in academic pharmacy after their participation in the scholarly experience (p < 0.001).
Participation in scholarly activities and student authorship of a peer-reviewed journal manuscript during pharmacy school may lead to increased interest in a career in academic pharmacy.
PMCID: PMC2865413  PMID: 20498740
pharmacy student; publication; scholarship; faculty recruitment; journal
4.  Perceived Stress and Quality of Life Among Doctor of Pharmacy Students 
To examine stress and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) among third-year doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students.
Stress and HRQOL were determined using Perceived Stress and SF-12 HRQOL survey instruments. A questionnaire was administered to determine factors students believed produced and eliminated stress.
Eighty percent of third-year students participated (n=109) in this pilot study. Mental HRQOL scores were significantly below US mean score for individuals aged 20-34 years (p<0.0001). As stress increased, mental HRQOL decreased and a significant negative correlation was found between the 2 measures (p<0.001). Family and relationships, examinations and scheduling, outside-of-class assignments, and finances were the most common stress triggers reported by students, while exercising, spending time with friends/family, sleeping, watching TV, and drinking alcohol were the most commonly reported stress-alleviating activities.
Third-year PharmD students reported relatively high levels of stress and low mental HRQOL. Students employed mostly positive, but some negative, lifestyle choices to alleviate stress. Further investigation into the effectiveness of students' coping strategies is needed.
PMCID: PMC2661164  PMID: 19325957
health-related quality of life; doctor of pharmacy students; mental health; emotional health
5.  An Active-Learning Assignment Using Nonprescription Medicines 
To create and implement a web-based written assignment to evaluate student's abilities to select appropriate nonprescription medications and recommend therapy.
Each student developed a patient case study from an assigned condition, made treatment recommendations, and provided patient counseling information using at least 2 nonprescription medicines. The active-learning exercise required students to apply information previously presented in a large classroom setting.
Cases most commonly submitted included therapy for burns, acne, conjunctivitis, lacerations, and poison ivy. One-hundred five students completed a 5-item questionnaire regarding the assignment. The majority of the respondents (51.9%) felt the assignment helped to reinforce course content and 58.1% felt it made them more comfortable with making product recommendations.
The Personal Pharmacy assignment was an effective learning activity for enhancing student's understanding and appropriate selection of nonprescription medicines.
PMCID: PMC2254249  PMID: 18322581
active learning; nonprescription medicines; self-care

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