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Med Teach. 2010;32(11):e492-500. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2010.509413.

Interprofessional educator ambassadors: An empirical study of motivation and added value.

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Medical and Social Care Education, University of Leicester, UK.



Interprofessional education (IPE) is being led by a driving force of teaches who advocate for the importance of this learning within health and social care professional curriculum. Many of these leaders have additional uni professional teaching responsibilities.


This study aimed to explore the impact of leading an IPE curriculum on teachers, who were at the forefront of establishing a new IPE curriculum in the east midlands, UK.


The prospective study used the principles of grounded theory to analyse the educator's experiences. The study included teachers who work from academic university posts and those who teach from within practice. These IPE leaders were identified through their involvement in the design and delivery of the local IPE initiatives. They were invited to share their experiences at either a mixed-discipline focus group, a one-to-one interview or by completing a postal/e questionnaire. During analysis the views from each data set were triangulated.


A total of 58 educators shared their experiences. All benefitted from being part of the planning and teaching teams. They were driven by a strong belief that IPE had the potential to improve patient care and that future healthcare practice would remain team based. Engagement had brought additional benefits to their teaching and career development in particular through forming new relationships with colleagues from other caring professions. They were concerned about educators teaching interprofessional student groups with little prior experience of IPE.


The data suggest educators who take on a leading developmental role in designing and delivering an interprofessional curriculum benefit personally and professionally through working relationships with colleagues in other professions and through teaching wider networks of students. These new insights strengthen personal practice and research and in turn have the potential to influence and improve the quality of faculty teaching.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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