Education case study reports reflection on teaching strategies for pharmacy students

Hana Morrissey, Patrick Anthony Ball


Introduction: Teaching should meet the needs of all types of learner present in the class room; the activist, the reflector, the theorist and the pragmatist who also have diverse backgrounds, levels of education and are from different age groups.

Aim: The aim of the four projects was to improve students’ engagement and success.

Method: New teaching strategies were trialled to improve students’ engagement and successes with topics which according to their feedback were considered ‘dry’. The author utilised techniques such as flipping the class-room, simulation, case or problem based learning; and group work replacing traditional lectures. First, third and fourth year students were asked to prepare for the in-class activities at home using the lectures or simulation software.

Results: The strategies were effective in a small class size of 15-20 students, with improved attendance and participation, improved fail/pass rate and number of students achieving credit or pass; however there was no significant change in the number of students achieving high distinction or distinction.

Evaluation: Reproducibility is an important part of the experiment to demonstrate that the results can be trusted. Success with one or two cohorts is not sufficient to adopt a method of teaching. Ongoing evaluation is essential to eliminate cohort-related effects prior to implementation. It is not clear if the achieved results would be achievable in larger classes due to the reduction in student: lecturer ratio and limitation of class room time to allow all students to participate. 


Simulation, Flipping the Classroom, Pharmacokinetics, Clean Room, Palliative Care, Peer Review

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