Objective: The process evaluation findings and key issues from a trial of the effectiveness and national applicability of a national online educational curriculum for pharmacist preceptors are presented.
Design: A multi-method triangulated research design was used to elicit qualitative and quantitative data preceptors. The data collection method involved an anonymous questionnaire with both quantitative components and open-ended qualitative responses.
Setting: An online education program for preceptors of Australian pharmacy students in rural areas.
Participants: Rural pharmacists in the three states were invited to trial the package and participate in the associated research/evaluation project.
Main outcome measures: The Australian Pharmacy Preceptor Education (APPE) program is an important and valuable educational tool for the professional development of pharmacists. It contained pertinent information and appropriate activities, and the delivery strategy was well accepted. The evaluation findings support a national implementation.
Results: Program strengths include the ease of access, self-directed learning and the interactive nature emphasising the benefit of sharing ideas and feedback. Potential program limitations include technical delays and unclear instructions for undertaking the program.
Conclusion: The online APPE program is a flexible delivery strategy which has the potential to dramatically improve the skills and knowledge of pharmacists acting as preceptors and, thereby, impact on the learning provided in rural hospitals and community pharmacies for undergraduate students and new graduates alike.