What does learning together mean for Pharmacy and Medicine students: is it really about, from and with?

Josephine Thomas, Koshila Kumar, Anna Chur-Hansen

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    Healthcare students from different professional backgrounds are often brought together under the banner of Interprofessional Education (IPE) in an effort to improve collaborative practice. Despite the demonstrated positive impact of IPE on students’ knowledge, skills and attitudes, it is not clear what students think about learning with students from another health profession. The aim of this study was to explore pharmacy and medicine students’ views and experiences of learning together.

    Participants were Year 3 Pharmacy and Year 4 Medicine students, with qualitative data gathered via a written reflection.

    Three main themes were identified. Students were accepting of learning with the other professional group. Learning about was evident, particularly in relation to each other’s roles and contributions to patient care. Learning from another professional group was the most problematic as students tended to view and treat knowledge as a commodity to be acquired from another rather than something that could be jointly developed.

    While medicine and pharmacy students’ valued learning with and about each other, they were less likely to engage in co-constructing and sharing new meanings and thus learn from one another. To provide a basis for meaningful collaborative practice, IPE needs to challenge students’ fundamental assumptions, beliefs and values about learning with, from and about other professions.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number42
    Number of pages10
    JournalMedEd Publish
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 28 May 2018

    Bibliographical note

    'This has been published under Creative Commons "CC BY-SA 4.0" (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/)'


    • Interprofessionalism
    • Medicine
    • Pharmacy
    • professional group
    • learning


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