A bridge over the river inquiry: Scaffolding research from classroom to practice

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


In 2017, Monash University launched a pharmacy Vertically Integrated Masters (VIM) program. Scaffoldedtraining supporting graduate research competency development progressing students from knowledgedevelopment to application of knowledge at increasing degrees of independence was a central component ofthe VIM. The capstone element of the VIM is a work-integrated learning program during the intern yearwhere interns lead an individual research project relevant to their workplace. Aim. To evaluate the perceived impact of a pharmacy student scaffolded research training program.

Pharmacy interns in 2021 were asked to complete a voluntary anonymous survey to evaluate their experience completing the research training program, the impact on their research skills, and any perceived barriers to research.

Of the 183 interns that completed the program, 55% (101/183) completed research in a hospital and 45% (82/183) in a community setting. 96 responses were received (52% response rate). Of the respondents, 93%(89/96) agreed or strongly agreed the program helped develop their research skills, 78% (75/96) felt confident to undertake further research, and 99% (95/96) concluded conducting research was important to pharmacy practice. At least one barrier to research was experienced by 83% (80/96) of respondents, the most common were lack of time to complete project (51/80, 64%) and lack of workplace support or direction (33/80, 41%).

The scaffolded program had a perceived positive impact on intern research skill development. Variation in the degree of research mentorship received at the workplace may account for why some interns reported a lack of confidence undertaking further research, as “lack of workplace support” was a commonly perceived barrier. Training in research mentorship for workplaces is a potential area of growth for the program. This program may serve as a model for other institutions seeking to support graduate research competency development.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2023

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