Cultivating Clinical Experience: Effectiveness of Blended Learning in Pharmacy Education

Document Type : Commentary


University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Maryland, US


The scope of health professions is widening at an exponential rate. As such, training in these fields must adapt quickly. Pharmacy is one of the fields in the healthcare sector that needs to change to meet the needs of the industry. Currently, pharmacy schools utilize Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experiences (IPPEs) and Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experiences (APPEs) to teach clinical skills to their students. Schools also utilize simulations and offer elective post-graduate residencies to give their students more hands-on experience. Simulations are becoming more prevalent in the field of education. Whether they are physical or virtual simulations, studies have shown that they are equally beneficial to students. Furthermore, a blended learning model of combining simulations with other modes of learning has shown to be more effective than utilizing simulations alone. Due to the expanding scope of the pharmacy profession, residencies are expanding in time and content. Some educators suggest that residencies should be extended from two years to three years to teach leadership skills, while others believe APPEs should have more rigid accreditation criteria. There has been some research done as to which methods of teaching allow students to learn most effectively. This paper explores such findings.


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