ePrePP (Preparation for Professional Practice)

The ePrePP resource is a student centred e-platform to enhance the transition from student to practitioner in medicine, nursing and pharmacy.

It achieves this, by identifying the students’ strengths and gaps from a list of required competencies, recording progress through formative and summative assessment using the e-portfolio and signposting the student to a digital library of resources to enhance the practical placement. This initiative is collaborative and intra-professional, creating rich opportunities for integrative learning.

The undergraduate curricula for health professionals are nationally regulated and include a mix of theory and practice. The signature pedagogy of the health care service includes the enhancement of practical skills of nurses, doctors and pharmacists through several professional practice placements. This exposes students to the reality of their professional field where inter-professional collaborative decision making and action is crucial.

However, the increasing number of healthcare students results in conflicting pressures on the professional work-place tutor. The time spent by the tutor between health care provision and this potentially rich undergraduate teaching, can result in suboptimal student experience and shallow learning. A key part of this project was to assist the students in making the most of being there by supporting both the student and the professional tutor. Exposure to patient facing scenarios enhances transition into professional practice and develop a more prepared practitioner.

The development of the ePrePP resource involved academics and practitioners from each profession. The common competency framework and e-portfolio were developed by overlaying existing professional competencies and learning logs, to establish common core competencies, and refined by the advisory group and focus groups of tutors, practitioners and students.

The tutorial platform comprises recordings of new and existing webinars and clinical scenarios and a digital library of relevant material. The webinars and scenarios are used to demonstrate the differing perspectives of medicine, pharmacy and nursing, thereby enhancing inter-professional learning.

The ePrePP was piloted and refined in selected sites across Ireland. The ePrePP was improved iteratively by testing in these off-campus teaching sites, by student and tutor evaluation and benchmarked against international good practice.

More information on the project can be viewed at: http://www.eprepp.ie/. Or, contact Professor Henry Smithson at: henry.smithson@ucc.ie.

ePrePP (Preparation for Professional Practice): Collaborative creation of a suite of digital tools to prepare healthcare students for professional practice.

Project Team 
Professor Henry Smithson, Department of General Practice
Dr Bettie Higgs, Centre for the Integration of Research, Teaching & Learning
Dr Caroline O'Connor, Department of Nursing and Midwifery
Dr Eileen O'Leary, Department of Pharmacy
Eirin O'Connell, Project Manager
Catherine Burke, Project Administrator
Carrie Griffin, Project Assistant

University of Limerick
Institute of Technology Tralee
University College Dublin
Trinity College Dublin
National University of Ireland, Galway

National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education; Teaching and Learning Enhancement Fund 2014 (Building Digital Capacity)

January 2015 - December 2016

Office of the VP for Learning and Teaching

Oifig an Leasuachtaráin Foghlama agus Teagaisc

East Wing, Main Quadrangle, UCC