Development of the assessment for collaborative environments (ACE-15): A tool to measure perceptions of interprofessional "teamness"

J Interprof Care. 2016 May;30(3):288-94. doi: 10.3109/13561820.2015.1137891. Epub 2016 Mar 30.


As interprofessional education moves from classroom to clinical settings, assessing clinical training sites for a high level of "teamness" to ensure optimal learning environments is critical but often problematic ahead of student placement. We developed a tool (Assessment for Collaborative Environments, or ACE), suitable for a range of clinical settings and health professionals, that allows rapid assessment of a clinical practice's teamwork qualities. We collected evidence of tool validity including content, response process, internal structure, and convergent validity. Expert review and cognitive interviews allowed reduction of the initial 30-item tool to 15 items (the ACE-15). Data from 192 respondents from 17 clinical professions and varied clinical settings (inpatient, ambulatory, urban, and rural) were used for factor analysis, which resulted in a single factor solution. Internal consistency reliability Cronbach's alpha was high at 0.91. Subgroup analysis of 121 respondents grouped by their clinical teams (n = 16 teams) showed a wide range of intra-team agreement. Data from a subsequent sample of 54 clinicians who completed the ACE-15 and a measure of team cohesion indicated convergent validity, with a correlation of the tools at r = 0.81. We conclude that the ACE-15 has acceptable psychometric properties and promising utility for assessing interprofessional teamness in clinical training sites that are settings for learners, and, in addition may be useful for team development.

Keywords: Clinical practice sites; interprofessional collaboration; interprofessional education; psychometric tool development; teamness.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Cooperative Behavior*
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Female
  • Group Processes
  • Humans
  • Interprofessional Relations*
  • Learning
  • Male
  • Organizational Culture
  • Patient Care Team / organization & administration*
  • Perception
  • Psychometrics
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*