Implementation and Evaluation of Team-Based Learning in a Pharmacy Law and Ethics Module

Implementation and Evaluation of Team-Based Learning in a Pharmacy Law and Ethics Module

Mara Pereira Guerreiro (CiiEM, Instituto Universitário Egas Moniz, Portugal)
Copyright: © 2021 |Pages: 27
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-4486-0.ch007
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Team-based learning (TBL) is an active learning strategy based on sequential stages: individual advanced preparation, readiness assurance process, and team application. When adopting this instructional strategy, planning entails consideration about organizing contents, securing the right infrastructure, forming groups, and grading students' work. The first class should be used to cover key aspects, such as explaining how TBL works and why it is being used. Facilitating TBL classes demands communication and organizational skills, in addition to content-expertise. TBL was implemented in a pharmacy law and ethics module. The perspectives of students collected through surveys were overall favorable. These perspectives, together with other favorable indicators, led to TBL maintenance until the current days.
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Development of TBL

In the late 1970s Larry K. Michaelsen, who taught small classes at Oklahoma University Business School, was faced with the challenge of teaching a class of 120 students. Instead of turning to lectures, Dr. Michaelsen split the class into small groups and introduced sequential activities that covered the course content and required students to apply their knowledge to problems and engage in discussions. By the end of the term, Michaelsen found that most students took responsibility for their own learning and accomplished good learning outcomes; interestingly, the large class size was regarded as more conducive to learning. The instructional method, called Team-Based Learning (TBL), was refined by Michaelsen over the years and disseminated in academia (Fatmi, Hartling, Hillier, Campbell, & Oswald, 2013; Krug et al., 2016).

At the end of the 1990s, Boyd Richard and colleagues at the Baylor School of Medicine in Texas piloted TBL. In 2001 the group received funding from the US government to introduce this instructional strategy and promote TBL in health professions education. Their work, which included faculty development workshops and symposia, led to TBL implementation in many educational programs in the US and abroad. Moreover, it resulted in the establishment of TBL collaborative, a mostly higher education consortium in TBL with initiatives to promote and strengthen this instructional strategy; their website is presented in the additional resources section (Krug et al., 2016; Parmelee, Michaelsen, Cook, & Hudes, 2012)

In 2008 Michaelsen published a seminal book on TBL for the health professions education, suggested as additional reading in this chapter.

The growing interest in this instructional strategy is illustrated by an upward trend in PubMed indexed articles. A search using the term ‘team-based learning’ restricted to the title showed an exponential increase in indexed articles, from one in 1996 to 36 in 2019, peaking at 45 in 2017.

In a systematic review of the published literature on TBL in health professions education, the pharmacy was the second most common field of study, surpassed only by medicine. Across the different fields of study, TBL has been used at an undergraduate and postgraduate level (Reimschisel, Herring, Huang, & Minor, 2017).

In pharmacy education, TBL has been chosen for a variety of topics, in both experiments and theory-oriented modules (Lang et al., 2019; Reimschisel et al., 2017). Its use as an instructional strategy for pharmacy law and ethics has also been detailed in the literature (Hasan, 2011).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Module: Unit of study in a higher education course, corresponding to several ECTS credits.

Macro-Unit of Instruction: Partition of a module content that can be tied together thematically.

European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) Credits: Means of expressing the volume of learning in the European Union, based on the defined learning outcomes and their associated workload in higher education.

Course: Entire educational program in higher education required to complete a degree.

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