Effect of Simulation Learning on Graduate Student Attitudes Toward Interprofessional Teams and the Team Approach to Care

Medical Subject Headings

Problem-based Learning; Interprofessional Education; Attitude; Students, Health Occupations; Occupational Therapy; Physical Therapy Specialty; Education, Graduate;


According to health care reports, more than 250,000 deaths annually are attributed to medical error, prompting interprofessional education (IPE) initiatives as one way to improve healthcare delivery. The problem is that little is known about the effect of simulation learning with standardized patients on occupational therapy (OT) and physical therapy (PT) students’ attitudes toward IPE. The purpose of this causal-comparative study using a pretest–posttest nonequivalent control group design was to investigate the difference in posttest scores on the Students’ Perceptions of Interprofessional Clinical Education—Version 2 (SPICE-R2) between first-term graduate OT and PT students who participated in a simulation and those who did not, while controlling for pretest SPICE-R2 scores. The SPICE-R2 generates a total score as well as three subscores for teamwork, roles, and outcomes. The theoretical frameworks were Kolb’s experiential learning and Pardue’s framework for IPE. Data from 25 students in a control group and a random sample of 25 students from 217 students in a simulation group were used in a one-way analysis of covariance. Results indicated no statistically significant difference between the control and simulation groups in posttest scores with a pretest covariate. This study contributes to positive social change by furthering the investigation of simulation effectiveness and provides a foundation for future studies related to different timing, length, outcome alignment, and frequency of simulation. This study contributes understanding regarding the preparation of OT and PT students to be part of a collaborative practice-ready workforce designed to reduce medical error and patient death.


Dissertation presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Education at Walden University.