Nursing Students’ Exposure to Interprofessional Education Experiences: Exploring Narratives through a Lens of Transformative Learning

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Kowalewski, Zbigniew
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Mount Saint Vincent University
For schools of nursing located across Canada, the challenge of providing opportunities for student nurses to engage in educational sessions with students from allied professions has resulted in diverse approaches to interprofessional education (IPE). The purpose of this study was to explore the narratives of nursing students exposed to formal IPE and those without formal IPE experiences. Twelve students in their final year of preparation for nursing responded to a telephone interview about their experiences with both curricular and extracurricular interprofessional education activities in clinical and classroom settings. Examined through a lens of transformative learning, the narratives indicated that, regardless of the program, nursing students had opportunities to learn with, from and about students and professionals from allied health professions in preparation for interprofessional collaboration (IPC). As nursing students in clinical settings begin to articulate their roles and responsibilities in alignment with the other professions, defining their edges as one participant put it, they are transforming from the nursing profession as separate toward nursing as integrated within a health profession team. The students with formal IPE experiences shared stories demonstrating an awareness of their role in making IPC happen rather than waiting for it to happen for them. By accessing the narratives of students immersed in the training process, this study contributes their perspectives to the current body of knowledge and informs those involved in curriculum development and evaluation.
Interprofessional education , Nursing students , Education , IPE , Transformative learning