Preparing Clinicians and Students for High Performance Teamwork in the CLE: Choosing Among Three Distance Education Modalities

Thursday, August 13, 2020, 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm EDT

The Clinical Learning Environment (CLE) plays an essential role in preparing students for transition to professional roles and practice. For experienced clinicians and team members, the CLE offers continuous learning and an enlarged space for practice improvement and innovation. The CLE is particularly important for modeling and improving teamwork and collaboration. At present, there are limited distance teaching materials designed to orient students and clinicians together for optimal team performance. In this seminar, we share findings from our research on student and clinician preferences for interprofessional education (IPE) and teamwork training. Participants compare the strengths and drawbacks of three distance teaching modalities (elearning modules, digital magazines and micro-learning), explore strategies for selecting among them and propose new modalities required for the future.


The session will provide knowledge and skills to improve interprofessional education in the CLE and ultimately to improve care and value. Learner outcomes include: 1) knowledge to critically analyze evaluation criteria for distance education; 2) skill in using evidence-based evaluation criteria to evaluate three distance learning modalities, and 3) skill in identifying creative ways to integrate teamwork training in the CLE for students and clinicians.


With COVID-19, much of IPE has shifted to the distance environment. Clinical settings are focused on prevention, detection and treatment of infection and have severely restricted student placements. Facing an unpredictable future, we anticipate a growing need for on-line teamwork education to orient and prepare students and clinicians for optimization of the CLE experience. It is a pivotal time to analyze and improve teamwork training materials and align them with student and clinician learning needs. Our research, including interviews and focus groups with clinician teams and surveys of interprofessional students, found that current teamwork training materials fall short in relevance, brevity and engagement. Our intentional efforts to improve these gaps have had promising results: students and clinicians rate eLearning modules and digital magazines high in interest, relevance, and practical application. During COVID-19, their use has more than tripled.


During this seminar, participants will discuss and prioritize criteria for distance teamwork training recommended by clinicians and students. We will share examples of eLearning and micro-learning modules and digital magazines developed by our team to highlight their different strengths and drawbacks. Following this, we will facilitate an active discussion about future needs for interprofessional training for CLE practice.


The rise in interest in the CLE and the dramatic shift to on-line learning offers unprecedented opportunity to evaluate the needs for distance learning in IPE for clinicians and students. Participants in this presentation will discuss research evidence to guide criteria for development and use of new modalities and ways to improve teamwork training in the CLE. Measurable outcomes include: Participant ratings of the usefulness and relevance of the evaluation criteria for students and clinicians in the CLE, perceived skill and confidence in applying the evaluation criteria to the three distance modalities discussed in this seminar and perceived likelihood of using the evaluation criteria and distance modalities in CLE education and practice.