Interprofessional Education (IPE)

IPE encompasses a learning continuum that stretches from the university to clinical practice in many types of settings. It involves numerous stakeholder groups, among them students, faculty, clients/patients/families, clinicians and administrators. IPE expands the traditional uniprofessional education model to an educational process where two or more professional groups are brought together to “learn about, from and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes” (World Health Organization, 2010). In current strategic planning that is occurring at Health Canada, the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and the University of Toronto, IPE is seen as key to developing well-prepared professionals who will assume leadership roles in health care upon graduation.

The University of Toronto IPE curriculum/program builds upon a rich history of IPE and is focused on the development of specific values and core competencies across eleven health professional programs such as dentistry, medical radiation sciences, medicine, nursing, occupational therapy, pharmacy, kinesiology and physical health, physician assistant, physical therapy, social work and speech-language pathology. The knowledge, skills/behaviours and attitudes developed through the IPE curriculum/program will enable students to provide collaborative patient/client-centred care in an interprofessional context. 

The IPE curriculum/program has been phased-in across the health professional faculties and departments starting in 2009, with new incoming students comprising the 2013-14 IPE entry cohort. This comprehensive curriculum/program includes the following four core learning activities:

i)   Teamwork: Your Future in Interprofessional Health Care – 2.5 hour session in Year 1
ii)   Conflict in Interprofessional Life – 2.5 hour session in Year 2
iii)  Case-Based: Interfaculty Pain Curriculum  – 3.5 days in Year 3
iv)   IPE Component in a Clinical Placement –  Integrated with Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience rotations during Year 4

As well, students will participate in a minimum of 2 elective sessions of any colour throughout their program in order to cover all IPE values and core competencies and to meet individual learning needs and interests. Note that all elective sessions are classified according to the learning level represented by a colour system. RED SESSIONS (Exposure): are introductory, often primarily composed of a didactic component. ORANGE SESSIONS (Immersion): are intermediate, including both didactic features and case based discussions. GREEN SESSIONS (Competence): are aimed at senior students, often including a large case based component, as well, may extend a longer time frame (e.g. 3 interviews over the course of the year).

Further information is available on the University of Toronto Centre for Interprofessional Education website (http://ipe.utoronto.ca).

Questions regarding the IPE requirement may be directed to ipe.phm@utoronto.ca.