Document Type (Journals)

Original Research


Collaboration among healthcare professionals has been widely cited as critical in ensuring optimal and efficient client care. To foster the development of this interprofessional competency in healthcare graduates, the University of Toronto created an Interprofessional Education (IPE) curriculum. However, the means by which the IPE curriculum developed interprofessional collaborative competencies in occupational therapy (OT) graduates had not been explored. The study identified the mechanisms and outcomes of University of Toronto’s IPE curriculum that contributed to OT graduates’ collaborative competency development. This study also identified the contexts in which this development occurred, and why such patterns were observed. This study employed a mixed-methods realist evaluation, which is an approach underpinned by program theories hypothesizing that specific contexts and mechanisms result in distinct outcomes. Qualitative and quantitative data from 2018 and 2019 OT graduates’ surveys, assessments, interviews, and reflection papers were utilized to test and refine initial program theories. Analysis revealed six outcomes that contributed to interprofessional collaboration: role clarification, team functioning, interprofessional communication, interprofessional conflict resolution, collaborative leadership, and advocacy. The analysis identified mechanisms that enabled and disabled the development of each outcome, and tested initial program theories, which aided refinement. The findings of this study can inform IPE curricula development, promote collaborative competency development in future OT graduates, and direct future IPE evaluation research.


Rabina Raveendrakumar, OT Reg. (Ont.) and Salihah Faroze, OT Reg. (Ont.) are Registered Occupational Therapists, and graduates of the Masters of Science in Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy Program at the University of Toronto. Their research interests seek to foster the development of collaborative competencies in health care profession students through the development of effective interprofessional educational curricula.

Sylvia Langlois is the Faculty Lead – IPE Curriculum and Scholarship for the Centre of Interprofessional Education and an Associate Professor, Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, Temerty Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto. Her work addresses the development of collaborative competencies, including the pedagogic approaches, assessment, and evaluation of curricula. She has a strong interest in partnerships with clients in the educational process.

David Rojas is an Evaluation Scientist for the MD program, a cross-appointed scientist at the Wilson Centre, and an Assistant professor at the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Temerty Faculty, of Medicine, University of Toronto. David’s work focuses on addressing programs complexity via program evaluation by using a Systems thinking approach. His program of research seeks to expand and develop new program evaluation approaches tailored to the characteristics of health-care related programs.

Declaration of Interest

The authors report no declarations of interest.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.