Participant views of an on-line program supporting rural pharmacy preceptors

Susan Taylor, Dawn Best, Jennifer Marriott, Lisa Dalton, Rosalind Bull, Anne Leversha, Kristie Galbraith, Helen Howarth, Maree Simpson, Miranda Rose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: In 2001 a consortium was formed between four Australian universities to develop, implement and evaluate an on-line program designed to prepare rural pharmacists for preceptorship. As part of the evaluation of the program, focus groups were conducted with pharmacists after they had completed the program and supervised a student on a rural placement. The aim of the focus groups was to ascertain pharmacists’ opinions of the on-line program and to seek their reflections on the impact the program had had on their subsequent supervision of a student. Methods: The focus groups were conducted either via teleconference or face to face. All groups were run by two experienced facilitators who used a structured interview schedule to elicit participants’ views. Participants were asked to discuss the positives and negatives of the on-line program, make suggestions for its improvement and discuss outcomes following completion of the program. Discussions were audio-taped and the tapes reviewed prior to final reporting. Results: Four focus groups were conducted in which 15 preceptors participated across three states. Participants described the program as excellent and appreciated the insight it gave them into student learning, and gender and cultural issues. Participants commented on changes in knowledge, preceptor behaviour and positive changes in their attitude towards being a preceptor. They reported having increased confidence in the role of preceptor and increased job satisfaction. Conclusions: Participants’ views of the program were very positive and after minor modification the Australian Pharmacy Preceptor Education Program was made widely available in 2006.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-56
Number of pages13
JournalFocus on Health Professional Education: A multi-disciplinary journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2007


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