Experiential Education Steering Committee Receives Award of Excellence from the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy

Jean Moon accepts the award on behalf of the Experiential Education Steering CommitteeJean Moon accepts the award on behalf of the Experiential Education Steering Committee

The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy has recognized the experiential component of the college’s curriculum as the winner of its 2016 Award of Excellence.

The goal of the Experiential Education (EE) Program is to enhance students’ attitudes, skills and knowledge through experiential learning around the state of Minnesota to prepare them to provide pharmaceutical care.

When the college revised its overall curriculum, it presented the EE Steering Committee with an opportunity to address and redesign its advanced practice components.

Associate Professor Amy Pittenger introduced the group to the Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs) evaluation tool— an assessment tool and framework used in medicine—as an alternate to the traditional Likert scale. The EPAs take an expected skill or knowledge for each student and frame it in a defined level of entrustment.

“After an assessment and review of the literature, we determined that the EPAs are a better way to assess skills in a way that is more intuitive to preceptors and practitioners,” said Associate Professor and Ambulatory Care Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) Course Director Jean Moon. “We created, defined, gained consensus and calibrated 11 universal EPAs with corresponding levels of entrustment.”

The EPA work has been published in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education and the college’s experiences have led to ongoing leadership in developing EPAs.

“Dr. Pittenger and our team have since served as an APPE redesign resource for programs nationally and internationally,” said Moon.

Consistent with the didactic years in the PharmD program, course directors have been added to the APPEs. According to Moon, the design of a course director model in APPEs has increased faculty engagement and collaboration in EE, which has led to new learning activities for practice management, patient tracking and evidence-based medicine.

“We saw great innovation come out of the curriculum redesign at the college,” said Moon. “It gave us an opportunity to reexamine and to spread our wings with Experiential Education. We believe in many ways our journey has just begun and we are excited to see the great momentum our work has started.”


Experiential Education Steering Committee members:

  • Dawn Carlson, assistant professor
  • Scott Chapman, associate professor
  • Angela Cortese, teaching specialist
  • Caity Frail, assistant professor
  • Christene Jolowsky, assistant professor
  • Mary McGuiggan, director of preceptor development
  • Jean Moon, associate professor
  • Jordan Orzoff, director of assessment
  • Ann Philbrick, associate professor
  • Amy Pittenger, associate professor
  • Raquel Rodriguez, assistant professor
  • Megan Undeberg, assistant professor