Evaluating a community-engaged vertically integrated teaching and learning pilot project
van de Mortel, TF, Trigger, R, Ahern, C & Bird, J 2013, 'Evaluating a community-engaged vertically integrated teaching and learning pilot project', Education for Primary Care, vol. 24, no. 3, pp. 165-172.
Objective: To evaluate a community engaged vertically integrated teaching and learning pilot project. Method: Thematic analysis of focus group interviews was used to examine 27 general practitioners' (GPs'), registrars' and medical students' perceptions of a vertically integrated workshop in adolescent health and subsequent small group health education sessions at two secondary schools. Pre- and postintervention surveys were used to measure changes to participants' knowledge, confidence, and attitudes towards registrars and students teaching in general practice. Results: Knowledge scores (7.46 ± 1.17 vs 9.54 ± 1.17; t = –9.6, P <0.001), and scores on the Confidence to Teach (3.34 ± 0.51 vs 4.09 ± 0.33; t = –6.61, P <0.001), and Vertically Integrated Teaching (4.01 ± 0.40 vs 4.30 ± 0.42; t = –3.45, P <0.05) scales increased significantly following the intervention. Scale reliability ranged from 0.74 to 0.87. Participants enjoyed the collegiality of learning together in a vertically integrated model. The experience stimulated self-reflection on teaching skills and a desire for peer review of teaching. Suggestions for improving the intervention included building a clearer link between the facilitation skills learnt in the school setting and how to implement them in general practice, and providing more targeted support for GPs on facilitating sessions with multiple levels of learner involved. Conclusions: A community-engaged vertically integrated teaching and learning model has the potential to increase participants' confidence to teach in small groups, and create a more positive perception of registrars and students teaching in general practice. The concept would benefit from further longitudinal research with a wider sample.