One site fits all? A student ward as a learning practice for interprofessional development

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Interprofessional Care, 2013, 27 (6), pp. 476 - 481
Issue Date:
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Interprofessional training wards (IPTWs), aiming to enhance interprofessional collaboration, have been implemented in medical education and evaluated over the last decade. The Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University has, in collaboration with the local health provider, arranged such training wards since 1996, involving students from the medical, nursing, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy programs. Working together across professional boundaries is seen as a necessity in the future to achieve sustainable and safe healthcare. Therefore, educators need to arrange learning contexts which enhance students' interprofessional learning. This article shows aspects of how the arrangement of an IPTW can influence the students' collaboration and learning. Data from open-ended questions from a questionnaire survey, during autumn term 2010 and spring term 2011 at an IPTW, was analyzed qualitatively using a theoretical framework of practice theory. The theoretical lens gave a picture of how architectures of the IPTW create a clash between the "expected" professional responsibilities and the " unexpected" responsibilities of caring work. Also revealed was how the proximity between students opens up contexts for negotiations and boundary work. The value of using a theoretical framework of professional learning in practice within the frames of healthcare education is discussed. © 2013 Informa UK Ltd.
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