Innovation in learning - An inter-professional approach to improving communication

Nurse Educ Pract. 2010 Nov;10(6):379-84. doi: 10.1016/j.nepr.2010.05.008. Epub 2010 Jun 18.


Inter-professional education (IPE) is recognised as a major way of introducing students in the health professions to the importance of teamwork and communication in the delivery of excellent healthcare. This pilot project evaluated mixed versus single discipline group tutorials of nursing and medical students as a way to promote IPE and understanding of communication. Four tutorial sessions were video-recorded and analysed using a video analysis coding grid. Additional data were drawn from student evaluations and assessment of group participation and were subjected to quantitative and qualitative analysis. The case study as portrayed in the DVD was thought to provide an effective learning tool by both sets of students. Medical students rated the need for mixed group tutorials significantly lower than the nursing students who thought the tutorial activity helped with an appreciation of the importance of communication to effective teamwork. However, medical students in the single discipline group did not understand the nursing role. The resources fostered reflection on student's own professional role as well as others; however, the importance of communication within the nursing role needs to be recognised by nursing students and curriculum designers.

MeSH terms

  • Diffusion of Innovation*
  • Education, Nursing, Baccalaureate / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interdisciplinary Communication*
  • Learning*
  • Male