Immersive clinical simulation in undergraduate health care interprofessional education: knowledge and perceptions

Guillaume Alinier, Colin Harwood, Patricia Harwood, Susan Montague, Eileen Huish, Krishna Ruparelia, Melina Antuofermo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)
230 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Interprofessional simulation at the undergraduate level has been tested but is still very scarcely used due to curriculum and logistical issues. Over a 3-year period we have conducted extracurricular immersive simulation sessions for multiprofessional groups of final year healthcare students.
Methods: Following ethical approval, a series of scenarios requiring various combinations of healthcare professionals' inputs were designed for students attending the simulation sessions on offer. Another team of faculty were involved in the creation of a questionnaire to test students on discipline specific knowledge and about their perception of multidisciplinary working. Students recruited to the study were semi-randomly selected to either a control or experimental group which determined whether they completed the knowledge questionnaire prior to or after simulation exposure.
Results: Participants were 237 students from Adult/Children/Learning Disability/Mental Health Nursing, Paramedic, Radiography, Physiotherapy, and Pharmacy. Questionnaire data analysis showed that experimental group students reported a higher perceived level of knowledge of other professions and were more confident about working as part of a multidisciplinary team than control group students (P<0.05). Although positive for both groups, experimental group students expressed greater appreciation for pre-qualification interprofessional learning opportunities. The experimental group outscored the control group by 3.23 percentage points on the discipline knowledge questionnaire (p<0.05).
Conclusions: The study shows that even limited interprofessional simulation exposure enabled students to acquire knowledge of other professions and develop a better appreciation of interprofessional learning. Discussions during the debriefings highlighted the fact that interprofessional training is important and valued by students, especially if it is well contextualized and facilitated through the exposure to realistic scenarios.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-216
Number of pages12
JournalClinical Simulation in Nursing
Issue number4
Early online date20 Mar 2014
Publication statusPublished - 2 Apr 2014


  • interprofessional education
  • undergraduate
  • multiprofessional simulation
  • teamwork
  • IPE


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