Validity and its integral evidence of reliability are fundamentals for educational and psychological measurement, and standards of educational testing. Herein, we describe these standards of educational testing, along with their subtypes including internal consistency, inter-rater reliability, and inter-rater agreement. Next, related issues of measurement error and effect size are discussed. This article concludes with a call for future authors to improve reporting of psychometrics and practical significance with educational testing in the pharmacy education literature. By increasing the scientific rigor of educational research and reporting, the overall quality and meaningfulness of SoTL will be improved.
psychometrics; educational testing; scholarship of teaching and learning; reliability; validity
Objective. To assess the doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students’ desire to obtain additional degrees after graduation.
Methods. During the spring 2011 semester, an anonymous 14-question survey instrument was administered to students across all 6 years of the PharmD program to evaluate their interest in obtaining an additional degree after graduation. Demographic data was also collected and analyzed from this convenience sample.
Results. Approximately 34% of the respondents (n=1,239) indicated a desire to seek an additional degree. Of the additional degrees offered in the survey instrument, more than one-third of the students expressed interest in the master of business administration (MBA). Also, 79% of those respondents were willing to take summer courses to achieve a dual or additional degree.
Conclusion. Pharmacy students are interested in obtaining an additional degree(s) after graduation and are willing to complete summer courses to achieve their career goals.
doctor of pharmacy students; career goals; graduate degree; dual degree
Objectives. To identify reasons for inclusion of international practice experiences in pharmacy curricula and to understand the related structure, benefits, and challenges related to the programs.
Methods. A convenience sample of 20 colleges and schools of pharmacy in the United States with international pharmacy education programs was used. Telephone interviews were conducted by 2 study investigators.
Results. University values and strategic planning were among key driving forces in the development of programs. Global awareness and cultural competency requirements added impetus to program development. Participants’ advice for creating an international practice experience program included an emphasis on the value of working with university health professions programs and established travel programs.
Conclusion. Despite challenges, colleges and schools of pharmacy value the importance of international pharmacy education for pharmacy students as it increases global awareness of health needs and cultural competencies.
global health; international education; pharmacy education; international practice experience; curriculum
Objective. To determine the amount and type of feedback needed to improve pharmacy students’ problem-solving skills using team-based learning (TBL) and a problem-solving rubric.
Methods. A problem-solving rubric was developed to assess the ability of pharmacy students’ to prioritize, organize, and defend the best and alternative options on TBL cases The study involved 3 groups of pharmacy students: second-year students in a cardiology class who received no feedback (control group), third-year students in an endocrinology class who received written feedback only, and third-year students in an endocrinology class who received written and verbal feedback. Students worked in groups on all TBL cases except the first and last one (beginning and end of course), which students completed independently as it served as a pretest and posttest.
Results. Significant improvements were seen in the ability of the third-year students who received verbal and written feedback to prioritize the information presented in the case and in their total score on the problem-solving rubric.
Conclusion. Providing pharmacy students with written and verbal explanations may help them improve their problem-solving skills overall. During verbal feedback, faculty members can provide more examples of how to improve and can field questions if needed.
team-based learning; problem-solving; rubrics; assessment; feedback
Objectives. To describe the development and validation of an instrument designed to assess student perceptions of physician-pharmacist interprofessional clinical education (SPICE).
Methods. Faculty members from pharmacy and medical schools developed items for the instrument, and 179 medical and pharmacy students completed the scale. Psychometric properties, including reliability and construct validity, were assessed using confirmatory factor analysis.
Results. The final instrument consisted of 10 items with 3 subscales measuring student perceptions of interprofessional teamwork and team-based practice, roles/responsibilities for collaborative practice, and patient outcomes from collaborative practice. Validity and reliability of the instrument were demonstrated.
Conclusion. The SPICE instrument demonstrated promise as a valid and reliable measure of pharmacy and medical student perceptions of interprofessional clinical education. SPICE may serve as a useful instrument for educational researchers in assessing the impact of interprofessional educational experiences.
interprofessional education; interdisciplinary education; instrument validation; confirmatory factor analysis
Objective. To determine whether a college of pharmacy curriculum creates a sense of self-efficacy among students with respect to providing medication therapy management (MTM) services.
Methods. An electronic survey instrument was sent to all pharmacy students to elicit information on their perceived confidence in providing MTM services, and the results were reviewed.
Results. Of the 1,160 students targeted, 464 (40%) completed the survey instrument. Responses indicated that overall self-efficacy increased with each successive year of the curriculum that students completed. Fourth-year students completing an advanced pharmacy practice experience (APPE) in medication therapy management (MTM) had significantly higher self-efficacy than did other fourth-year students, whose self-efficacy was similar to that of third-year students.
Conclusion. In this study population, students’ self-efficacy increased with each successive year in pharmacy school, with those who completed an APPE in MTM exhibiting the highest level of self-efficacy. These students may be more likely to pursue MTM opportunities in future careers.
medication therapy management; student self-efficacy; advanced pharmacy practice experience
Objectives. To relate common online scenarios to tenets of professionalism, assess frequency of observed scenarios in 4 online domains, and compare second-year (P2) pharmacy students, fourth-year (P4) pharmacy students’, and faculty members’ perceptions of professionalism.
Methods. A 63-item survey instrument consisting of scenarios of behavior in online domains was developed. Using a Likert scale, participants reported whether they had observed each scenario and whether each scenario was professional.
Results. Of the 296 participants who completed the survey instrument, 53% were P2 students, 49% were P4 students, and 68% were faculty members. Most of the observed scenario responses were for social networking sites. There were statistical differences among the 3 cohorts’ perception over whether a scenario demonstrated professional behavior in 6 of the 10 most frequently observed scenarios, and 4 out of 6 of these scenarios were in the social networking domain.
Conclusion. Second-year pharmacy students and faculty members were more in alignment with their perception of professionalism then P4 students, suggesting that P4 students may be more complacent in their perception of professionalism.
professionalism; e-professionalism; electronic media; faculty; pharmacy students
Objective. To determine which student characteristics and performance criteria in the prepharmacy and doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) program predict success on the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX).
Methods. Transcripts and NAPLEX scores were reviewed for 432 graduates from the Xavier University of Louisiana College of Pharmacy between 2008 and 2011.
Results. The preadmission variables that correlated with NAPLEX scores included math-science grade point average (GPA), cumulative GPA, student type (internal or transfer), and having no unsatisfactory grades (p<0.001). In the PharmD program, cumulative GPA, on-time graduation, and having no unsatisfactory grades in the prepharmacy and PharmD programs correlated with NAPLEX scores (p<0.001).
Conclusion. Having no unsatisfactory grades in the prepharmacy program and a high cumulative GPA in the PharmD program were identified as significant predictors of success on the NAPLEX.
North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination; admissions; grade point average
Objectives. To describe the work factors associated with 28 different career areas as reported by pharmacists who responded to the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) Career Pathway Evaluation Program for Pharmacy Professionals, 2012 Pharmacist Profile Survey
Methods. Data from the 1,119 completed survey instruments from the 2012 Pharmacist Profile Survey were analyzed. Exploratory factor analysis was used to identify the underlying factors that best represented respondents’ work setting profiles.
Results. Eleven underlying factors were identified for the respondents’ work setting profiles: patient care, application of clinical knowledge, innovation, stress, research, managerial responsibility, work schedule flexibility, job position flexibility, self-actualization, geographic location, and continuity of coworker relationships. Findings revealed variation for these underlying factors among career categories.
Conclusion. Variation among pharmacist career types exists. The profiles constructed in this study describe the characteristics of various career paths and can be helpful for decisions regarding educational, experiential, residency, and certification training in pharmacist careers.
pharmacist; career; work setting profile; pharmacist; survey
Objective. To develop, implement, and assess student-learning outcomes from an assignment designed to expose first-year pharmacy students (P1) to a wide range of pharmacy career pathways.
Design. Students enrolled in a required Pharmacy Practice and Ethics course at the Lebanese American University chose 1 pharmacist career to investigate from a suggested list of 28 career pathways. Students completed a literature review on the selected career, interviewed a pharmacist practicing that career path in Lebanon, wrote a paper, and prepared and delivered a summary presentation to their classmates about the career pathway. Students peer evaluated their classmates after each presentation.
Assessment. More than 85% of the students scored ≥70% on the assignment based on their achievement of student learning outcomes. Responses on an anonymous questionnaire showed that more than 94.6% of students were satisfied with the extent to which the course allowed them to meet the established learning outcomes.
Conclusion. A career exploration assignment provided pharmacy students with an opportunity to widen their knowledge and understanding of the different career pathways that are available for them.
career; pharmacy; students; career pathways
Objective. To determine whether “flipping” a traditional basic pharmaceutics course delivered synchronously to 2 satellite campuses would improve student academic performance, engagement, and perception.
Design. In 2012, the basic pharmaceutics course was flipped and delivered to 22 satellite students on 2 different campuses. Twenty-five condensed, recorded course lectures were placed on the course Web site for students to watch prior to class. Scheduled class periods were dedicated to participating in active-learning exercises. Students also completed 2 course projects, 3 midterm examinations, 8 graded quizzes, and a cumulative and comprehensive final examination.
Assessment. Results of a survey administered at the beginning and end of the flipped course in 2012 revealed an increase in students’ support for learning content prior to class and using class time for more applied learning (p=0.01) and in the belief that learning key foundational content prior to coming to class greatly enhanced in-class learning (p=0.001). Significantly more students preferred the flipped classroom format after completing the course (89.5%) than before completing the course (34.6%). Course evaluation responses and final examination performance did not differ significantly for 2011 when the course was taught using a traditional format and the 2012 flipped-course format. Qualitative findings suggested that the flipped classroom promoted student empowerment, development, and engagement.
Conclusion. The flipped pharmacy classroom can enhance the quality of satellite students’ experiences in a basic pharmaceutics course through thoughtful course design, enriched dialogue, and promotion of learner autonomy.
pharmaceutics; flipped classroom; distance learning
Objective. To improve pharmacy and nursing students’ competency in collaborative practice by having them participate in an interprofessional diabetes experience involving social networking.
Design. An existing elective course on diabetes management was modified to include interprofessional content based on Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC) competency domains. Web-based collaborative tools (social networking and video chat) were used to allow nursing and pharmacy students located on 2 different campuses to apply diabetes management content as an interprofessional team.
Assessment. Mixed-method analyses demonstrated an increase in students’ knowledge of the roles and responsibilities of the other profession and developed an understanding of interprofessional communication strategies and their central role in effective teamwork.
Conclusion. Interprofessional content and activities can be effectively integrated into an existing course and offered successfully to students from other professional programs and on remote campuses.
interprofessional education; social networking; diabetes; pharmacy students; nursing
Objective. To develop, implement, and evaluate a targeted educational intervention focusing on smoking cessation with final-year undergraduate pharmacy students.
Design. A smoking-cessation educational workshop entitled Smoking Cessation in Pharmacy (SCIP) was designed on the principles of adult learning and implemented with a full cohort of final-year undergraduate pharmacy students at the University of Sydney. A previously validated questionnaire testing the knowledge and attitudes of respondents was administered both before and after implementation of the designed workshop to evaluate changes resulting from the intervention. Informal feedback was obtained from students.
Assessment. Pre-course mean total knowledge and attitude scores calculated were 65.8±9.1 and 86.4±12.1, respectively. The post-course mean total knowledge score was 74.9±8.1, and the attitude score was 88.8±9.1 Improvement in knowledge and attitudes was significant (p<0.05).
Conclusion. Educational interventions for pharmacy students designed with careful attention to pedagogic principles can improve knowledge about evidence-based smoking-cessation strategies and enhance positive attitudes to pharmacist roles in smoking cessation.
pharmacy students; smoking cessation; workshop
Objective. To evaluate the impact of the Salt Education Program for hypertensive adults on student pharmacists' knowledge, behaviors, and attitudes regarding sodium consumption.
Design. As part of the introductory pharmacy practice experience program in community pharmacies, student pharmacists assessed patients' sodium intake knowledge and behaviors, taught them how to read nutrition labels, and obtained information about their hypertensive conditions. Students completed pre-and post-intervention questionnaires in April and August 2012, respectively.
Assessment. One hundred thirty student pharmacists (70% female, 78% white) completed pre- and post-intervention questionnaires. Students demonstrated significant improvements in knowledge scores (p<0.001) and perceived benefit of a low-salt diet (p=0.004). Further, there were significant improvements in the self-reported frequency of looking at sodium content of foods when shopping (p<0.001) and purchasing low-salt foods (p=0.004).
Conclusion. Changes in students' knowledge, behaviors, and attitudes after participating in the Salt Education program suggested that the program was effective in improving student knowledge, behaviors, and attitudes.
salt; sodium; patient education; knowledge; dietary behaviors
With the increase of new pharmacy colleges and schools throughout the country, the number of open clinical academic pharmacy positions continues to grow. Considering the abundance of clinical faculty positions available nationwide and the increased likelihood of current pharmacy residents transitioning from residency directly into academia, pharmacy residents must be prepared to succeed in the role of new clinical faculty member. However, no blueprint or recommendations have yet been provided to facilitate this transition. The purpose of this review article is to evaluate the literature regarding transitioning pharmacy students and/or residents into faculty roles. The literature reviewed represents nursing, medical, graduate school, and engineering disciplines because no literature on this topic was available from the pharmacy profession. Based on the recommendations provided in the literature and on the authors’ experience at their college, they created a blueprint consisting of 7 components to help residents transition directly into their roles as faculty members.
career; academia; pharmacy residents; clinical faculty; pharmacy faculty