A Scoping Review of Pharmacy Preceptor Training Programs

Am J Pharm Educ. 2020 Oct;84(10):ajpe8039. doi: 10.5688/ajpe8039.


Objective. To review the literature pertaining to pharmacy preceptor training programs. Findings. Preceptor training is becoming increasingly important to maintain the quality of experiential training and professional development of pharmacy students, preregistration trainees, and residents. This review found limited documented examples of preceptor training programs and wide variation in both their design and delivery, which was attributed to the diversity of pharmacy practice workplaces and the different types of trainees. The majority of programs included a significant online component, often supported by a face-to-face orientation, with a focus on developing core competencies and with some tailoring of content to suit the specific workplace environment. Evaluations of these training programs showed high preceptor satisfaction rates, with preceptors appreciating the ease of access of online training and the benefits of interaction with other preceptors in face-to-face training. Preceptors also reported positive changes in their behavior during and attitudes toward precepting and an increased understanding of student learning. Summary. This review has highlighted that a structured and evidence-based approach to preceptor training is needed. Programs should be educationally sound, practically focused, and flexible in meeting the needs of a diverse range of preceptors and practice environments. Prospectively, programs should be evaluated not only in terms of outcomes for preceptors, but also for student, preregistration trainee, and resident engagement and attainment of educational outcomes.

Keywords: feedback and assessment; preceptor development; training; tutor.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Curriculum
  • Education, Distance
  • Education, Pharmacy*
  • Humans
  • Pharmacy Residencies
  • Preceptorship*
  • Problem-Based Learning*
  • Program Development
  • Schools, Pharmacy*
  • Students, Pharmacy*