Introduction: This project report describes the development, “piloting” and evaluation of an interprofessional seminar on team communication bringing together medical students and Interprofessional Health Care B.Sc. students at the Medical Faculty of Heidelberg University, Germany.
Project Description: A five-member interprofessional team collaborated together on this project. Kolb’s experiential learning concept formed the theoretical foundation for the seminar, which explored three interprofessional competency areas: team work, communication and values/ethics. Evaluation for the purposes of quality assurance and future curricula development was conducted using two quantitative measures:
descriptive analysis of a standardized course evaluation tool (EvaSys) ANOVA analysis of the German translation of the University of the West of England Interprofessional Questionnaire (UWE-IP-D).
Results: The key finding from the standardized course evaluation was that the interprofessional seminars were rated more positively [M=2.11 (1 most positive and 5 most negative), SD=1, n=27] than the monoprofessional seminars [M=2.55, SD=0.98, n=90]. The key finding from the UWE-IP-D survey, comparing pre and post scores of the interprofessional (IP) (n=40) and monoprofessional (MP) groups (n=34), was that significant positive changes in mean scores for both groups towards communication, teamwork and interprofessional learning occurred.
Conclusions: Lessons learnt included: a) recognising the benefit of being pragmatic when introducing interprofessional education initiatives, which enabled various logistical and attitudinal barriers to be overcome; b) quantitative evaluation of learning outcomes alone could not explain positive responses or potential influences of interprofessional aspects, which highlighted the need for a mixed methods approach, including qualitative methods, to enrich judgment formation on interprofessional educational outcomes.