Planning for Interprofessional Education opportunities

What will you find on this page?


Within the workplace (themes for learning outcomes, case studies and for various practice contexts)

Simulated Learning


Within the workplace

Quality care consists of meeting a client’s healthcare needs and goals.  Rarely is there a clinical setting where only one health professional can meet all of the healthcare needs of a client.  Mental health, rehabilitation, cancer care, aged care, private practice and chronic disease management are a few of the areas where healthcare providers require teamwork and collaboration to progress client care.  Each of these environments could be utilised as an IPE forum.  Everyday clinical activities provide a myriad of environments for IPE.

  • In services
  • team meetings
  • ward rounds
  • case conferences
  • home visiting
  • group programs
  • initial assessments
  • case screening
  • written correspondence
  • Teleconferencing

Interprofessional practice is integral for client care to be successfully achieved.  Supervisors can facilitate students’ awareness of their own and others’ roles within these settings.  The table below provides some themes for supervisors to consider when using IPE with students.

Themes for learning outcomes from interprofessional learning




  •   Knowledge of and skills for (including recognition of importance of common goals)
  •   Knowledge of, skills for and positive attitudes to collaboration with other health professionals
  •   Assume the roles and responsibilities of team leader and team member
  •   Barriers to teamwork
  •   Improve collaboration with other health professionals in the workplace
  •   Analysis of when and why professionals become key workers
  •   Facilitate interprofessional care conferences, team meetings etc.
  •   Team dynamics and power relationships
  •   Cooperation and accountability

Roles/ responsibilities

  •   Knowledge and understanding of the different roles, responsibilities and expertise of health professionals
  •   Knowledge and development of one’s own professional role
  •   Similarities and differences relating to roles, attitudes and skills
  •   Understanding of role/professional boundaries
  •   Being able to challenge misconceptions in relations to roles
  •   Knowledge of the health system and organization of health care within it
  •   Philosophies of care


  •   Communicate effectively with other health professional students
  •   With other professionals
  •   Negotiation and conflict resolution
  •   Express one’s opinions to others involved with care
  •   Listens to others/team members
  •   Shared decision making
  •   Communication at beginning and end of shifts (handover, handoff)
  •   Awareness of difference in professionals’ language
  •   Exchange of essential clinical information (health records, through electronic media)
  •   Learning/reflection  
  •   Identification of learning needs in relation to future development in a team
  •   Identification of common professional interests through reflection
  •   Learning through peer support
  •   Reflect critically on one’s own relationship within a team
  •   Transfer interprofessional learning to clinical setting
  •   Self-questioning of personal prejudice and stereotyped views

The patient

  •   The patient’s central role in interprofessional care (patient-focused or centred   care)
  •   Understanding of the service user’s perspective (and family/carers)
  •   Working together and cooperatively in the best interests of the patient
  •   Patient safety issues
  •   Recognition of patient’s needs
  •   Patient as partner within the team


  •   Acknowledge views and ideas of other professionals
  •   Respect
  •   Ethical issues relating to teamwork
  •   Ability to cope with uncertainty
  •   Understand one’s own and other’s stereotyping
  •   Tolerate difference, misunderstandings and shortcomings in other professionals
  •   Whistle blowing

Examples of interprofessional education opportunties during placement

  • Orientation or tutorial session/s with students from more than one profession.  These could focus on topics that are relevant to all health professionals, for example, models of care, referral pathways, micro-counselling skills or building a therapeutic relationship with the client.
  • Case studies that allow students from different professions to discuss their roles and scope of practice in the care of the client.
  • Observation of a health professional or student health professional from another profession within the team.
  • Project based placements that require input from more than one health profession.
  • Group therapy sessions that can be delivered by students from different health professional backgrounds.

Examples of interprofessional education opportunities within the workplace

  • Queensland Health - Capricornia Student Led Clinic:  Conducted in Rockhampton, Central Queensland, this student led clinic addresses the needs of clients facing chronic disease.  Students included Dietitians and Nutritionists, Occupational Therapists, Podiatrists, Exercise Physiology, Pharmacy and Social Work practitioners.  A full evaluation of the clinic was completed and can be used as a basis for setting up clinics.  They have also provided a toolkit for other clinical settings who may be considering starting a student-led clinic including recommendations and initial assessment and evaluation forms.
  • UQ Health Care student assisted clinics:  UQ Health Care run clinics in Ipswich, Meadowbrook and Woolloongabba and through a Health Workforce Australia Clinical Training Placement funded project have developed a range of student assisted programs.  These programs include interprofessional screenings, assessment, and interventions focused on Aged and Chronic Disease – the ‘Your Life Your Health’ Program – and Child Wellbeing – the ‘Child Wellbeing’ program.  An interprofessional education model is used to underpin the supervision provided to students while on placements.
  • Student assisted clinics to support neurological rehabilitation in remote Queensland:  This is a joint program between James Cook University, Mt Isa Centre for Rural and Remote Health, Community Rehab Northern Queensland and Townsville Mackay Medicare Local and Central and North West Queensland Medicate Local providing community based rehabilitation services in the North West Queensland region for people with neurological and ageing conditions through a student led service.  This example utilised services from Physiotherapy, Pharmacy, Occupational Therapy and Speech Pathology. 
  • Monash Peninsula Health Increasing capacity through student led clinics
  • Health Education and Training (HETI): have a series of resources and examples of Interprofessional Education in their 'Placement Models and Opportunities' section of their website.

IPE within Practice Contexts

For more information regarding interprofessional learning within the specific practice areas of Mental Health, Rural and Remote, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Aged Care, follow the relevant links below.


 Back to top

Simulated learning

Throughout University courses, students from many professions undertake simulated learning.  Either with actors, each other, or pre-recorded scenarios, students are provided with the opportunity to experience a clinical case study in real time.  Students must undertake an assessment, provide interventions and evaluate the outcomes with the ‘simulated’ client.  Simulated learning provides a controlled environment for students to practise what they have been taught in the formal education setting, enhancing their skills prior to practicing in the workplace when on clinical placement.

Examples of IPE simulation learning

 Back to top


  • About the Health Fusion Health Care Team Challenge, (n.d.). Retrieved from
  • Thistlethwaite, J. & Moran, M. (2010). Learning outcomes for interprofessional education (IPE): Literature review and synthesis. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 24 (5), 503–513.
  • Occupational Therapy Clinical Education Program (2019) Factsheet: Supporting student learning through interprofessional opportunities.  Queensland Health




Reflection Activity

Add your reflections for this page content by logging into...
(read more...)



Was the information on this page helpful?