Teaching Patient-Centered Communication Skills to Medical and Pharmacy Students Using an Interprofessional Blended Learning Course

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Objectives: 1) To evaluate the impact of an interprofessional blended learning course on pharmacy and medical students’ communication skills; 2) To compare pre- and post-course communication skills across cohorts. Method: Pharmacy (N = 57) and medical (N = 67) students enrolled in a required Communication Skills for Health Professionals course completed asynchronous online modules and face-to-face standardized patient interview sessions over the course of 1 semester. Students completed pre- and post-course objective structured clinical examinations with standardized patients and were evaluated by trained faculty using the validated Common Ground Instrument. Communication skill domains evaluated on a 1 to 5 scale included: rapport building, agenda setting, information management, active listening, addressing feelings, and establishing common ground. Nonparametric statistical tests were used to examine paired pre-/post-course domain scores within professions and pre- and post-course scores across professions. Results: Performance in all communication skill domains increased significantly for pharmacy and medical students (p valuesImplications: The blended learning Communication Skills for Health Professionals course improved students’ interpersonal communication skills across multiple domains. Fostering communication skill development in medical and pharmacy students could improve the extent to which future health care professionals engage in patient-centered communication.


National Harbor, MD

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© Copyright American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. This abstract was originally published in (2015). 116th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy National Harbor, Maryland, July 11-15, 2015. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education: Volume 79, Issue 5, Article S4. https://doi.org/10.5688/ajpe795S4

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