Managed care peer-led teaching: An innovative learning approach outside the college of pharmacy core curriculum

Sy Hui Tang, Julia Smith, Wilson Lau, Isaac Tse, Christine Tan, Ryan Cotten, Amy L Pittenger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Managed care pharmacy is a growing field, but there are still limited educational opportunities available in pharmacy school core curricula. Students often seek self-directed learning opportunities to further explore the field. OBJECTIVES: To (a) evaluate practicality and effectiveness of a studentdesigned managed care pharmacy elective and (b) determine emerging best practices for design and sustainability of peer-led, self-directed courses. METHODS: A managed care elective course was designed as a student, peer-led course during the 2012-2013 school year at the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy. As the course evolved, coordinators evaluated the effectiveness and sustainability of a student-led elective. The course required students to select a managed care topic of interest and deliver a discussion-based presentation. Teleconferencing was used to maximize participation and flexibility of pharmacist delegates from local managed care organizations who provided industry insight and expert mentorship. Data sources were gathered via course evaluation surveys, peer evaluations of presentations, and postgraduation surveys. Data were used to guide course improvement, gain insight into motivation for student participation, and evaluate the effect on career choices. RESULTS: During the fall and spring semesters of 2014-2015, 45 students participated and completed surveys: 28 in the fall and 17 in the spring. Seventy percent of enrollees took the course because of interest in managed care; 12[%] took the course because of referrals from past students; and 12[%] enrolled to explore topics outside of the pharmacy core curriculum. After completion of the course, 50[%] of students felt "somewhat comfortable" in discussing managed care topics, and 31[%] felt "very comfortable." None of the 17 students from the spring semester class answered "not comfortable" or "somewhat not comfortable." Suggestions for improvement from the fall semester class led to smaller class size, a roundtable setting, and new meeting times. In a survey of 6 graduates, 1 student pursued a fellowship; 2 students obtained managed care residencies; and 1 student worked as a managed care pharmacist. CONCLUSIONS: Data collected from students enrolled in the managed care elective indicated increased exposure and enhanced knowledge on topics discussed. Data also indicated value and support for the addition of peerled courses to the College of Pharmacy's curriculum. Graduates who took the course have pursued managed care careers and confirmed the benefits of peer-led learning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)755-759
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Managed Care and Specialty Pharmacy
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2017

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© 2017, Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy. All rights reserved.


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