Date of Award



© 2017 Andrea Kessler

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Carey Clark

Second Advisor

Peter Fifield

Third Advisor

Pamela Reynolds


Interprofessional education (IPE) is a global initiative to prepare pre-licensure health professional students for health care team collaboration (WHO, 2010). However, many barriers limit IPE development in academia, including academic structure and faculty participation. The purpose of this study is to better understand how participation in IPE programs affects faculty social identity and their attitudes toward IPE curriculum inclusion. The use of social identity theory and transformational learning theory conceptually guide the research process. This multiple-case study collected data from the interviews of eight faculty representing various entry-level health professions from three universities. Each participant had experience in at least one IPE program. Data analysis of their responses was conducted manually and in aggregate. All themes are supported with direct quotes from participants, and approved by an external audit. Each theme was classified into correlating research-based categories, including social identity, attitudes toward IPE, faculty role in IPE and faculty learning experience. Cross professional-culture diversity and interaction hierarchy were the themes supporting the social identity category. Perseverance, professional competence, and self-directed learning were the themes identified in the attitudes toward IPE category. The theme of role expansion supported the faculty role in IPE category. Finally, student perceptions and valued collaboration were the established themes related to faculty learning from IPE. Analysis of the themes led to the findings of the study. The first finding related to social identity revealed faculty who participate in IPE breakout from their academic silo to initiate discussion with faculty from other departments; and often choose programs that their discipline commonly collaborates with clinically. The second finding recognized that despite barriers to IPE program development and limited administrative support, faculty persevere to promote best clinical practice through IPE programming inclusion in curriculum. The third finding identified faculty who participate in IPE programs often want to expand their role in future programming. The final finding acknowledge faculty learn that they appreciate the IPC experience with faculty from other disciplines, and students benefit from IPE experience. In conclusion, IPE has a positive effect on faculty development and promotes IPE sustainability in curriculum.


Ed.D. Dissertation