Teaching social sciences to undergraduate pharmacy students: An international survey †


  • Kath Ryan Royal London House, Bournemouth
  • Paul Bissell University of Nottingham, Nottingham
  • Claire Anderson University of Nottingham, Nottingham
  • Janine Morgall Traulsen Danish University of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Copenhagen
  • Betsy Sleath University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina


Pharmacy undergraduate curriculum, social and administrative pharmacy, social and behavioural sciences in pharmacy teaching, pharmacy course objectives, course evaluation, student assessment and faculty qualifications


Introduction: There is a dearth of recent research exploring the changing scope of the pharmacy undergraduate degree.

Methods: A standard web-based questionnaire was developed to collect data on social science teaching in Schools of Pharmacy. Snowball sampling was used. The questionnaire was ongoing and electronically analysed, assigning an average ranking to responses.

Results: There were 62 respondents representing Schools of Pharmacy from 17 countries. The social science disciplines and subjects are charted to show the frequency and year in which they are taught and open-ended responses regarding course objectives, course evaluation and student assessment are collated.

Discussion: Social/administrative pharmacy appears to have gained in acceptance within the pharmacy establishment showing an advancing degree of sophistication and rudimentary development of a theoretical base. However, there was a wide range of subjects, from scientific to behavioural, being taught under the banner of social pharmacy suggesting a lack of definitional agreement.

Author Biographies

Kath Ryan, Royal London House, Bournemouth

Institute of Health & Community Studies

Paul Bissell, University of Nottingham, Nottingham

School of Pharmacy

Claire Anderson, University of Nottingham, Nottingham

School of Pharmacy

Betsy Sleath, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina

School of Pharmacy


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Research Article