Academic journal article American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education

Assessment of Full-Time Faculty Preceptors by Colleges and Schools of Pharmacy in the United States and Puerto Rico

Academic journal article American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education

Assessment of Full-Time Faculty Preceptors by Colleges and Schools of Pharmacy in the United States and Puerto Rico

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

The 2007 ACPE Accreditation Standards and Guidelines 2.0 for doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) programs emphasize the importance of programmatic assessment and evaluation. (1) One integral component of this process is the assessment of the college's or school's faculty members. As noted in Standard 26, faculty members should be evaluated regularly on their ability to teach effectively, produce scholarly work, engage in ongoing professional development, provide patient-care activities, and contribute to the pharmacy program, the community at large, the profession of pharmacy, and the development of students. (1) This evaluation should involve self-assessment and input from multiple individuals including students, peers, and supervisors.

While all these factors should be evaluated, the literature regarding pharmacy faculty evaluation has focused largely on classroom teaching, (2-12) with the most common evaluation strategies being peer assessment of classroom teaching (5-8) and student evaluations (print and Web-based). (9-13) There is a paucity of published data regarding the assessment/evaluation of faculty members in experiential or clinical teaching settings. In a survey documenting teaching evaluation practices in colleges and schools of pharmacy, Barnett and Matthews found that 100% of respondents used student evaluations, and 18% also used peer evaluation to evaluate experiential teaching on advanced pharmacy practice experiences (APPEs). (14) Assessment methods used for evaluating teaching in introductory pharmacy practice experiences (IPPEs) were not described in the manuscript.

The report by Barnett and Matthews focused solely on teaching and did not evaluate other aspects of a faculty member's responsibilities, such as service and scholarship. A search of the literature yielded no reports of evaluation methods used by colleges and schools of pharmacy to assess overall performance of clinical pharmacy faculty members at their practice sites. The purpose of this study was to identify the manner in which colleges and schools of pharmacy in the United States and Puerto Rico assess full-time faculty members who serve as preceptors and practice at experiential sites. Specifically, the purpose was to identify the types of assessments used, the frequency with which each is conducted, and those responsible for conducting the assessment. Methods for assessing classroom teaching were not determined.

METHODS

A draft questionnaire was designed and reviewed by persons at 4 different colleges and schools of pharmacy with knowledge of the subject area and/or expertise in study design or curricular assessment. These individuals were asked to assess the proposed survey instrument for ease of completion, clarity, comprehensiveness, and overall suitability. Following feedback, the questionnaire was modified and sent to 3 different individuals with similar expertise for comments. After the second revision, the instrument and a cover letter were submitted to the institutional review board at Long Island University, and the research project was granted exempt status.

The final questionnaire contained 102 questions, but as the instrument was developed in such a way that a given response led to specific follow-up questions and omitted others, no respondent would need to answer all items. We estimated that the average respondent would need about 15 minutes to complete the survey instrument. The survey instrument included questions dealing with demographics of the respondent's college or school, abilities and attributes assessed for practice-based full-time faculty members, various types of assessments, and frequency of conducting each assessment. Respondents were requested to focus on full-time faculty members (and preceptors who were paid partially by the college/school and partially by the practice site but were treated as full-time faculty members) who were assigned to experiential sites to precept students and, perhaps, provide service to the site. …

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