Escaping the professional silo: an escape room implemented in an interprofessional education curriculum

Cheri Friedrich, Hilary Teaford, Ally Taubenheim, Patrick Boland, Brian Sick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


Communication skills among healthcare professionals are a necessary component in ensuring quality outcomes for patients. This report describes the design and curricular implementation of an interprofessional escape room, an innovative way to promote communication and positive team dynamics among students. In this interactive, serious game, teams of approximately eight interprofessional participants were provided with a fictitious patient case in a simulated hospital environment. Within a 45-minute time limit, students needed to use objects in the room to solve a series of puzzles to successfully complete the room by addressing all the patient’s needs. A facilitated debrief following the activity allowed participants to reflect on their communication skills and teamwork during the experience. A total of thirty students across seven professions piloted the activity, and 181 students across five professions participated in the activity as part of an academic course. Feedback from students was collected on a seven-point Likert scale and revealed the value of an interprofessional escape room in academia. This report, which describes what appears to be the first interprofessional health care escape room within an IPE curriculum, demonstrates the value of the escape room in encouraging teamwork, facilitating communication, and promoting interprofessionalism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)573-575
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of interprofessional care
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 3 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors received funding for puzzles and supplies for the escape rooms from the University of Minnesota Academic Health Center. We would like to thank Craig Roth, MD and Donald Uden, PharmD for reviewing this manuscript and for their input into the escape room design.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, © 2018 Taylor & Francis.


  • Interprofessional education
  • communication
  • escape room
  • evaluation
  • students
  • teamwork


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