Improving Understanding of Teaching Strategies Perceived by Interprofessional Learning (IPL) Lecturers to Enhance Students’ Formulation of Multidisciplinary Roles: An Exploratory Qualitative Study

Lynn Dalrymple, Caroline Joy Hollins Martin, Wendy Smith


Background: Interprofessional Learning (IPL) is an educational process intended to equip health and social care students with appropriate knowledge, skills, and attitudes for effective interprofessional working. By and large, the literature review highlighted in this article has shown that IPL is a worthwhile pursuit, with some studies highlighting conflicts over best teaching methods to use. In response, the aim of this exploratory research was to improve understandings of teaching strategies perceived by IPL lecturers to enhance students' formulation of multidisciplinary roles.

Methods: An exploratory qualitative study was carried out. Semi-structured interviews were conducted, with a purposive sample of 4 consenting IPL lecturers. The objectives of the study were to extend understandings of strategies believed to enhance or inhibit students' accurate assimilation of Allied Health Professional (AHP) roles, to nurture awareness of potential obstacles that may inhibit successful delivery of IPL, to promote insight into what constitutes quality delivery of IPL, and to identify potential topics for further research.

Findings: Five themes emerged from the data: (1) IPL lecturers hold contrasting viewpoints about the need for IPL; (2) improved understanding of roles is directly proportional to time spent with AHPs; (3) perspectives differ about when and where IPL should be taught; (4) stereotyping and negative attitudes inhibit accurate role construction; and (5) positive role modelling by lecturers is important.

Conclusions: This article acts in a conscience-raising manner and highlights five key areas of lecturers' understandings about how to effectively deliver IPL. This nurtured awareness will be used to develop and evaluate new implementations in IPL and education.




Education; Interprofessional Learning (IPL); Interdisciplinary; Learning objectives; Phenomenology; Qualitative

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