Written Socratic Dialogue as a self-learning technique in a Pharm.D programme


  • Émilie Tremblay-Wragg Université du Québec à Montréal
  • Françoise Crevier Université de Montréal
  • Gilles Leclerc Université de Montréal
  • Grégoire Leclair Université de Montréal http://orcid.org/0000-0003-3087-2646


Instructional Techniques, Self-Learning, Self-Paced Learning, Socio-Constructivist Approach, Socratic Dialogue


As part of a reform of the Pharm.D programme at the Université de Montréal’s Faculty of Pharmacy in 2007, self- learning was proposed as a valued instructional technique to develop lifelong learning competencies for the students. In this context, Written Socratic Dialogue (WSD) emerged as the primary technique used by professors. WSD is to be conducted in three steps: (1) self-learning activities; (2) student-faculty interaction sessions; and (3) wrap-up activities. The objectives of this study were to evaluate the place of WSD as part of a range of instructional techniques and eventually to formulate recommendations. Student perception on diverse instructional techniques was determined using a validated survey, which also allowed technique appreciation and ranking analysis, as well as a better understanding of student-faculty interactions. The survey results showed that the benefits of WSD are improved time management, faster learning, and opportunities for in-depth learning. 

Author Biographies

Émilie Tremblay-Wragg, Université du Québec à Montréal

Ph.D. student - Département de didactique, Faculty of Education

Françoise Crevier, Université de Montréal

Ph.D. - Faculty of Pharmacy

Gilles Leclerc, Université de Montréal

Ph.D. - Conseiller en intégration technopédagogique, Faculty of Pharmacy

Grégoire Leclair, Université de Montréal

Professeur associé -Faculty of Pharmacy


Biggs, J. & Tang, C. (2007). Teaching for Quality Learning at University. 3rd ed. Berkshire, England: Society for Research into Higher Education and Open University Press.

Brydges, R., Dubrowski, A. & Regehr, G. (2010). A new concept of unsupervised learning: directed self-guided learning in the health professions. Academic Medicine, 85(10 Suppl.), S49-S55.

Cornelius-White, J. (2007). Learner-Centered Teacher- Student Relationships Are Effective: A Meta-analysis. Review of Educational Research, 77(1), 113-143.

Freeman, S., Eddy, S.L., McDonough, M., Smith, M.K., Okoroafor, N., Jordt, H. & Wenderoth, M.P. (2014). Active learning increases student performance in science, engineering, and mathematics. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, 8410-8415.

Hake, R.R. (1998). Interactive-engagement vs traditional methods: A six-thousand-student survey of mechanics test data for introductory physics courses. American Journal of Physics, 66(1), 64-74.

Jensen, J.L., Kummer, T.A. & Godoy, P.d.M. (2015). Improvements from a Flipped Classroom May Simply Be the Fruits of Active Learning. Life Sciences Education, 14, 1-12.

King, A. (1993). From Sage on the Stage to Guide on the Side. College Teaching, 41(1), 30-35.

Kuh, G.D., Kinzie, J., Schuh, J.H. & Whitt, E.J. (2005). Student success in college: Creating conditions that matter. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Legendre R. (2005). Dictionnaire actuel de l'éducation (3rd edition). Montreal: Guérin.

Nederveld, A. & Berge, Z.L. (2015). Flipped learning in the workplace. Journal of Workplace Learning, 27(2), 162-172

Pashler, H., Rohrer, D., Cepeda, N.J. & Carpenter, S.K. (2007). Enhancing learning and retarding forgetting: Choices and consequences. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 14(2), 187-193.

Pierce, R. & Fox, J. (2012). Instructional design and assessment: Vodcasts and Active-Learning Exercises in a “Flipped Classroom” Model of a Renal Pharmacotherapy Module. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education, 76(10), 1-5.

Reigeluth, C.M. (1996). A New Paradigm of ISD. Educational technology, (May-June).

Touchton, M. (2015). Flipping the Classroom and Student Performance in Advanced Statistics: Evidence from a Quasi-Experiment. Journal of Political Science Education, 11(1), 28-44.

Tremblay, N.A. (2003). L’autoformation : pour apprendre autrement. Montréal: Presses de l’Université de Montréal.

Université de Montréal. (2004). Transformation du programme de Baccalauréat en pharmacie en un programme de Doctorat professionnel de 1er cycle en pharmacie. Dossier de présentation du programme à la CRÉPUQ. Document interne. Montréal: Faculté de pharmacie.

Voorhees, R. & Bedard-Voorhees, A. (2017). Principals for competency-based education. In Instructional-Design Theories and Models, Volume IV: The Learner-Centered Paradigm of Education, (eds. C.M. Reigeluth, B.J. Beatty & R.D. Myers). New York, London: Routledge.




How to Cite

Tremblay-Wragg, Émilie, Crevier, F., Leclerc, G., & Leclair, G. (2017). Written Socratic Dialogue as a self-learning technique in a Pharm.D programme. Pharmacy Education, 17. Retrieved from https://pharmacyeducation.fip.org/pharmacyeducation/article/view/454



Research Article