Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Teaching & Learning


Medical errors are a prominent problem in health care systems in many countries, including the U.S. One source of medical errors is communication and collaboration between health care team members. Many medical, nursing, and allied health care programs have implemented interprofessional health carecourses to improve communication between future team members. However, a dearth of literature on the effectiveness of interprofessional education and the variables that may influence its efficacy continues to persist.

This survey research explored medical, nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and social work students' achievement of knowledge, psychologicalstress, and satisfaction in an interprofessional health care course. Ninety-six students enrolled in medical, nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and social work academic programs were surveyed following their completion of a 6-week, problem-based learning, interprofessional health carecourse.

Students, overall, acknowledged improved achievement of interprofessional health care knowledge after completion of the course and were satisfied with the course. Results found differences between disciplines in the area of achievement of knowledge, psychological stress, and course satisfaction. Notably, medical students were found to benefit the least from the course in terms of achievement of knowledge and also reported the lowest satisfaction scores when compared with other disciplines. Medical, occupational therapy, and physical therapy students reported higher psychological stress than nursingstudents.

A positive relationship was revealed between the length of the students' program experience and students' professional identity, amounts of time spent studying and psychological stress, and satisfaction and achievement of knowledge. A negative relationship was found between time spent studying and achievement of knowledge, and psychological stress and length of time in the students' academic disciplines No relationship was established between the time of the semester in which the course was offered and students' achievement of knowledge, course satisfaction, and psychological stress.

Variables that may warrant consideration when designing interprofessional health care curricula include discipline-specific values as they relate to interprofessional collaboration, students' professional identity acquisition, the amount of time students dedicate to studying, and students' psychologicalstress. Additional research is needed to further understand the complexities that influence students' learning in interprofessional health care courses.

Included in

Psychology Commons