Interprofessional Education in Nursing Education: A New Way of Knowing

Monday, 9 November 2015: 2:05 PM

Marian J. George, EdD, MCE, BScN, RN, GNC(C), CCHN(C)
School of Health Sciences, Nursing Department, Red Deer College, Red Deer, AB, Canada

Background: Teaching and learning in nursing is changing in response to increased complexity and societal issues in client care.  A call for innovation in nursing education is imminent and IPE may be the innovative teaching process needed to address this change.  However, change may be difficult in a bound profession such as nursing.  The intent of completing this research was to identify the perspectives and meanings of IPE as seen through the eyes of nurse educators.

Purpose: To explore how nurse educators understand interprofessional education (IPE) in the context of nursing education, and explore how nurse educators use interprofessional education when teaching in an undergraduate nursing program in a western Canada. 

Methods: Grounded in constructivism, qualitative methodology was used. A single exploratory case study provided opportunity to explore a real-life complex phenomenon in the natural setting of nursing education (n=15).  Data analysis was framed in social constructivism and transformative learning theory, underpinned by adult learning theory.

Results:  A knowledge gap about IPE in nurses’ ways of knowing exists; it may be time to add to the established culture of nursing and explore a way of knowing about IPE in nursing, adding to the characteristics and ways of knowing of the profession.  As the nurse educators suggested, this new way of knowing may require risk taking and motivation but it may be time for nurse educators to move beyond the insular knowledge of the traditional profession in order to teach in the 21st century 

Implications: Faculty development in ways of knowing about interprofessional education is needed.  Future research to illuminate how language guides nursing education, policy development, and a new way of knowing about IPE.