E-learning communication skills training for physiotherapy students: a two phased sequential mixed methods study

Andy Soundy, Laura Hemmings, Lucy Gardiner, Sheeba Rosewilliam, Nicola R Heneghan, Katie Cronin, Kate Reid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Test whether a single e-learning session can improve empathy and communication across pre-registration and postgraduate physiotherapy students.

METHODS: Design: Two-phase sequential mixed methods study. Phase 1: Pilot randomised control trial. Phase 2: Qualitative study using interpretive phenomenological analysis.

SAMPLING: A purposive sample for both phases.

OUTCOME MEASURES: Phase 1: At baseline, post and 6-week follow up. Demographics.

PRIMARY OUTCOME: Inter-personal Reactivity Index (IRI). Phase 2: Demographics and interview schedule.

INTERVENTION: An e-learning (E) narrative intervention group or active control condition.

ANALYSIS: Phase 1: Descriptive statistics and confidence intervals. Mann-Whitney U test to compare across group change. Phase 2: Thematic analysis.

RESULTS: Thirty-nine participants took part in the mixed methods study (Phase 1 n = 25; Phase 2 n = 14). Phase 1: No significant differences between groups were identified. Potentially importance changes across time were found for the intervention group and control group. Phase 2 results identified 5 themes and 12 sub-themes.

CONCLUSION: The e-learning groups identified an increase in the perceived ability to handle distressing communication. Other important findings from the e-learning are discussed. Further research is warranted. Practical Implications Novel e-learning intervention may have an important role in curriculum development and clinical practice to promote therapeutic communication.

PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS: Novel e-learning intervention may have an important role in curriculum development and clinical practice to promote therapeutic communication.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPatient Education and Counseling
Early online date20 Jan 2021
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 20 Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2021 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Education
  • E-learning
  • Narrative
  • Mixed methods
  • Intervention
  • Physiotherapy
  • Healthcare

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