• A study of attitudes of faculty and administrators towards interprofessional education.

      Delnat, Catherine Christine
      Faculty and administrator’s attitudes are believed to be important in planning and implementing successful interprofessional education in the academic environment with the goal of increasing health sciences students’ competencies in interprofessional collaborative practice. The purpose of this study was to examine attitudes toward interprofessional education and identify attributes that may have an impact on those attitudes. A survey was distributed to all faculty and administrators in the health care sciences field at this institution. Using scales adopted from peer-reviewed literature, respondents were asked questions designed to rate their attitudes toward health care teams, interprofessional education, and interprofessional learning in the academic setting. Information about each respondent’s academic discipline, professional role, years worked in higher education, years of experience with interprofessional education, and gender were also collected. One open ended question was included. A 32% response rate from those surveyed (N = 42) indicated that discipline had a significant effect on attitudes towards health care teams, F(4, 35) = 4.10, p = .008, ω2 = .24, as well as on attitudes towards interprofessional education, F(4, 35) = 3.28, p = .022, ω2 = .17. On average, men scored lower (M = 3.96) than women (M = 4.30) in attitudes towards health care teams, t(38) = -2.20, p = .034, two-tailed, r = .36. The 95% confidence interval for the mean difference of -.34 was -.65 to .03. Respondents who reported no, or some experience in interprofessional education scored lower (M = 3.74) on attitudes towards interprofessional learning in the academic setting than those who reported being experienced (M = 4.24), t(37) = -3.15, p = .003, two-tailed, r = .46. The 95% confidence interval for the mean difference of -.51 was -.83 to -.18. The findings indicated a positive attitude of faculty and administration towards interprofessional education, especially with respect to the importance of understanding collaborative roles and developing communication skills needed for interprofessional endeavors. However, there appeared to be less confidence in the feasibility of providing interprofessional learning opportunities in the current academic setting. Discipline, gender, and experience in interprofessional education were all significant attributes to overall attitudinal responses towards interprofessional education. These findings may be useful in planning successful faculty development opportunities for interprofessional education.