Interprofessional Development, Education, and Active Learning (IDEAL) Teams

The UT Southwestern School of Health Professions sponsors an interdisciplinary course designed to enhance interprofessional development, education, and active learning (IDEAL) for health professions students. The IDEAL curriculum emphasizes communications skills with patients and other members of the health care team. 

The IDEAL program was designed to improve interdisciplinary interaction across programs within the School of Health Professions and across UT Southwestern Medical Center.

First-year students from each of seven educational programs within the School of Health Professions are assigned to small interdisciplinary teams led by faculty facilitators. Discussion topics include behavioral styles, interdisciplinary teamwork, behavioral modification, generational and cultural differences, and health care ethics.

The IDEAL schedule is designed for groups to meet twice monthly over a nine-month period (September to May) and interact with Academic Colleges and Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) Groups, culminating with participation in Convergence Day activities.

SHP Convergence Lecture Series

The monthly School of Health Professions Convergence Lecture Series serves as another learning community event for all IDEAL groups. These events provide a venue for the delivery of theme-based science of medicine lectures.

The IDEAL program takes advantage of the learning-community format to foster a deeper understanding of science of medicine themes and further promote interaction with content experts from the two other schools.

Interprofessional Simulation

Interdisciplinary Team Meeting: A simulated geriatric care team meeting with the Cooper Family

Students in medical, nursing, and health professions programs attend this joint simulation session. Students meet in small team of 3-4, with each group having multiple health professions represented.

This simulation is designed to lead students to introductory milestones (recognition and understanding) on the path to obtaining core competencies for interprofessional collaborative practice. Working effectively as a member of a clinical team is key to safe, high quality, accessible, patient-centered care.

The goal of the session is for students to work as an interdisciplinary team to help the Cooper Family prioritize their options for the best residential placement for Mrs. Cooper following her discharge from the skilled nursing hospital.

Learning Objectives – At the end of this session, students will recognize and understand the importance of the following sub-competencies (1-4) that are drawn from the four core competencies in the interprofessional collaborative domain identified by the Interprofessional Education Collaborative¹:

  1. Work effectively as part of a team by using shared, patient-centered problem solving
    a) Communication of roles (Roles/Responsibilities Sub-competency: RR1)
    b) Respecting/valuing contributions of other team members, patient, and family members (Values/Ethics for Interprofessional Practice Sub-competency: VE4)
    c) Active listening (Interprofessional Communication Sub-competency: CC4)
    d) Managing meeting to be patient-centered (Team and Teamwork Sub-competency: TT3)
  2. Compare and contrast out-patient placement options for hospitalized patients who cannot be safely discharged home.
  3. Given a scenario, solve the problem of patient placement by coming up with a prioritized list of placements options for the Cooper family.

¹Interprofessional Education Collaborative. (2016). Core competencies for interprofessional collaborative practice: 2016 update. Washington, DC: Interprofessional Education Collaborative.

Team Members

View the Interdisciplinary Team Meeting: A simulated geriatric care team meeting with the Cooper Family Team Members.

Physician Pharmacist
Physician Assistant Social Worker
Nurse Practitioner Physical Therapist
Registered Nurse Registered Dietitian/Clinical Nutritionist