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

*Corresponding author for this work

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
Pages (from-to)2045-2053
Number of pages9
JournalPatient Education and Counseling
Volume104
Issue number8
Early online date20 Jan 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
None.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier B.V.

Keywords

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

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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