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Pharmacist and pharmacy student perceptions of a competency-based national licensing exam for entry to pharmacy practice in Qatar: A qualitative study

Jillian Reardon, Daniel Rainkie, Emily Black, Kyle Wilby, Banan Mukhalalati, Samar Aboulsoud, Sherief I Khalifa, Zubin Austin

Abstract

Introduction: The College of Pharmacy at Qatar University partnered with the Qatar Supreme Council of Health to pilot a competency-based final cumulative assessment as a model for subsequent national licensing exams. The objective of this study was to explore perceptions of pharmacy stakeholders on a national licensing exam.

Methods: A qualitative study was undertaken in Qatar using three focus groups; two with pharmacists (N = 3 and 8) and one with graduating pharmacy students (N=5). Focus groups were facilitated using a topic guide developed by study investigators. Discussions were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim. Results were analysed using framework analysis.

Results: Four major themes were identified: i) Perception of current licensing process, ii) exam impact on stakeholder perception of pharmacists, iii) perceived implementation barriers, and iv) facilitators of successful implementation.

Conclusion: Participants identified the importance of a competency-based exam. Barriers were identified that must be addressed to facilitate successful implementation. 


Keywords

Perception, Competency-Based Exam, Licensure


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