Self-directed learning: preparing students for lifelong learning


  • Michael M Tunney School of Pharmacy, Queen’s University Belfast, 97 Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7BL, UK
  • Heather M Bell N. Ireland Centre for Pharmacy Learning and Development, Queen’s University Belfast, 97 Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7BL, UK


CPD is likely to be an important element of the revalidation process. Engaging in self-directed learning as an undergraduate student will help individuals develop the relevant skills to direct their own future learning within the CPD framework.
Module description
Three self-directed learning units were introduced to the Level 4 Pharmacotherapy Module of the MPharm programme at Queen‟s University Belfast.
A short questionnaire was administered to students to determine the extent to which they had engaged in self-directed learning and the value of this learning. Fifty seven percent of students had engaged in the self-directed learning and reported positively regarding the experience. The remaining 43% who failed to engage did not view self-directed learning as a priority.
Future plans
To ensure that graduates are produced who are capable of engaging in self-directed learning and thus CPD, self-directed learning should be introduced at an earlier level in the undergraduate curriculum.


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Research Article