The perception of nursing, pharmacy technician, and paramedic students participating in interprofessional simulation: A mixed methods study



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The purpose of this study was to understand the effectiveness of IPE-Sim as a learning methodology. Interprofessional education (IPE) provides a collaborative approach to educating students from different health-related programs. However, rigorous studies are limited about the effectiveness of simulation-enhanced IPE (IPE-Sim) as an educational methodology supporting interprofessional teams, role recognition, and collaborative practice.

A mixed methods design was used to study the complex phenomenon of the effectiveness of IPE-Sim in promoting interprofessional teams, role recognition, and collaborative practice. The quantitative investigation was conducted using a randomized, two-group experimental design with repeated measures while the qualitative exploration was based on hermeneutic phenomenology of interpreting the meaning of the lived experience by interviewing participants. To better understand this phenomenon, the datasets were collected simultaneously, analyzed, and converged to determine congruence, or incongruences, associated with the phenomenon.

A total of 60 students participated in the study. The hypothesis indicated the experimental group would score   higher on the SPICE-R2 scores than the attention control group at both time two (T2) and time three (T3). The significance occurred at T2 between the treatment group (M = 44.23, SD 4.36) and the attention control group (M = 41.27, SD 5.70) and not at T3. Therefore, the hypothesis was partially met. Overall, a significant effect was noted for time in both groups. Ten students participated in the individual interviews following the second simulation. The structural analysis as proposed by Lindseth and Norberg (2004) guided the interpretation of the qualitative data as the meaning units and themes yielded a comprehensive understanding of the phenomenon. Congruency was noted as both datasets confirmed the participants valued collaboration, learning about each other’s roles, and appreciated working in an interprofessional team.

Nurses are an integral member of the healthcare team. The National League for Nursing (2016) encouraged nurse educators to develop meaningful IPE strategies to help students from different professions collaborate effectively, while providing team-based care to improve patient outcomes. This study supports the importance of providing opportunities for students in healthcare fields to learn with one another, as they learn about one another in collaborative practice.



Interprofessional, Education, Simulation, Nursing, Allied health