Improving the interprofessional practice, knowledge, and skills of health professions students through an interactive course in gerontology

Elizabeth A. Mulvaney, Rachel Jantea, Paula Leslie, Pamela Toto, Mary Allias, Catherine Grant, Victoria Hornyak, Julie Klinger, Rhaven Nelson, Susan Skledar, Kylea Covaleski, Rollin M. Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Interprofessional, collaborative health care is the ideal standard in geriatrics. Students’ interprofessional practice skills are limited in typical siloed education. An experiential, team-based geriatrics course was designed to improve health professions (HP) students’ knowledge, skills, and attitudes about interprofessional practice. Students (n=209) from dentistry, medicine, nursing, nutrition, occupational therapy, pharmacy, physician assistant, social work, and speech-language pathology were assigned to interprofessional (IP) and medical-student only teams. The Interprofessional Collaborative Competency Attainment Survey-Revised (ICCAS-R) was administered pre-and post-course, along with program evaluations. Seventy percent of students completed both pre-and post-surveys. ICCAS-R scores were analyzed comparing the impact of training for medical students (n=78) on IP teams and remaining HP students (n=58). Students rated themselves as improved on all six ICCAS-R subscales (paired t-tests, p < 0.05). Sixty-nine percent rated themselves as better able to collaborate interprofessionally. A competitive team-based learning exercise using gamification was rated as the most authentic skill-building interprofessional activity. Experiential learning where students worked with the same team helped to build interprofessional and teamwork skills. Findings will be used to improve authenticity of the clinical and teamwork content, increase the use of gamification as a teaching technique, and refine students’ practice of IP teamwork competencies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)184-203
Number of pages20
JournalAdvances in Social Work
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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