Piloting an Online Module for Interprofessional Education to Introduce First-Year Students to Health Behavior Change

  • Michael Peeters University of Toledo
  • John Wryobeck University of Toledo
Keywords: interprofessional education, online, motivational interviewing


Objective: To meet the needs of patients with behavioral health problems, health professional students require training in helping patients contemplate and move towards behavior change. Motivational Interviewing (MI) is one such intervention. This novel online training module was developed for groups of interprofessional education (IPE) students.

Design: Thirty-eight first-year health-professions students were trained using an online introduction to MI. This was followed by cases with questions where students were asked to provide MI consistent responses. Case participation was done through an online discussion board, where all students could respond to case questions, and to their peers. The discussion board was monitored by a faculty member skilled in the practice of MI and another skilled in interprofessional education/development.

Conclusions: Students reported the course to be valuable and an acceptable way to begin learning new communication skills, and about other health-professions. Students’ self-rating of empathy and understanding of patients who do not readily commit to behavior change improved significantly from pre-module to post-module. This online MI module for IPE appeared to be a success.

Conflict of Interest
None to report

Treatment of Human Subjects: IRB review/approval required and obtained


Type: Note


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Received 2017-12-18
Accepted 2018-02-20
Published 2018-03-29