Free
Poster Session
Issue Date: July 2015
Published Online: July 01, 2015
Updated: April 30, 2020
The Effect of a Transdisciplinary Early Intervention Playgroup Experience on Interprofessional Student Attitudes
Author Affiliations
  • University of New England
  • University of New England
Article Information
Early Intervention / Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / School-Based Practice / Health Services Research and Education
Poster Session   |   July 01, 2015
The Effect of a Transdisciplinary Early Intervention Playgroup Experience on Interprofessional Student Attitudes
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July 2015, Vol. 69, 6911510216. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2015.69S1-PO6098
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July 2015, Vol. 69, 6911510216. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2015.69S1-PO6098
Abstract

Date Presented 4/18/2015

Successful interprofessional collaboration is key to effective health care service delivery. This 2-yr, mixed-method study showcases the impact of the university-based Transdisciplinary Toddler Playgroup on interprofessional attitudes, communication, and understanding of involved students.

SIGNIFICANCE: In the pursuit of best practice, occupational therapy practitioners benefit from experience working interprofessionally during their education. The ability to communicate effectively with practitioners from other health care disciplines and to articulate the unique contribution of occupational therapy as well as the roles of other professionals is critical for achieving optimal client outcomes. The University of New England provides many interprofessional education opportunities for its students, including its annual Transdisciplinary Toddler Playgroup, which involves occupational therapy, physical therapy, and social work students working interprofessionally in an early intervention–type setting. Effective interprofessional communication and collaboration are becoming increasingly recognized as key components of best practice and high-quality health care service delivery. Research indicates that there is a need for preprofessional education in early intervention for occupational therapists (OTs), physical therapists (PTs), and speech-language pathologists (SLPs). The purpose of this study was to identify the effect of interprofessional collaboration of graduate-level occupational therapy, physical therapy, and social work students in an early intervention toddler playgroup setting on the students’ attitudes regarding interprofessional communication and teamwork, learning, interactions, and relations.
METHOD: Study groups were not homogeneous; occupational therapy students were all involved with the hands-on part of the playgroup, whereas greater numbers of physical therapy students indicated the need for the majority of this group to watch via closed circuit television. Data were collected from two different years of the playgroup: 2013 and 2014. The University of West England Interprofessional Questionnaire Entry Level Interprofessional Questionnaire (Pollard, Miers, Gilchrist, & Sayers, 2006) was administered to all students before and after the playgroup. In addition, qualitative data were obtained through focus questions after completion of the playgroup. We analyzed quantitative data from the surveys using SPSS software.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: Themes that emerged from the qualitative data from the focus questions were identified with NVivo software. Preliminary data analysis of calculating the means of the aggregate scores of the occupational therapy students indicates that there was a significant improvement on all four subscales of Communication and Teamwork, Interprofessional Learning, Interprofessional Interactions, and Interprofessional Relations. Preliminary analysis of the PT students’ aggregate scores indicates that there was a significant change on the subscale of Interprofessional Learning. Differing levels of participation in the playgroup experience may have affected the level of interprofessional attitude change.
References
Pollard, K. C., Miers, M. E., Gilchrist, M., & Sayers, A. (2006). A comparison of interprofessional perceptions and working relationships among health and social care students: The results of a 3-year intervention. Health & Social Care in the Community, 14, 541–552. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2524.2006.00642.x