An Interprofessional Peer Teacher Training program for health professional students: ‘face to face’ versus ‘online only’.


  • Annette Burgess University of Sydney, Australia
  • Christie van Diggele University of Sydney, Australia
  • Carl Schneider University of Sydney, Australia
  • Inam Haq University of Sydney, Australia
  • Delyse Leadbeatter University of Sydney, Australia
  • Sascha Karunaratne Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Australia
  • Susan McKenzie University of Sydney, Australia
  • Tyler Clark University of Sydney, Australia
  • Jaimie Henry University of Sydney, Australia
  • Jacqueline Bloomfield University of Sydney, Australia


COVID-19, teacher training, interprofessional, online learning, blended learning


In 2020, following the disruption of COVID-19, we rapidly moved the interprofessional Peer Teacher Training (PTT) program, traditionally delivered via blended learning to ‘online only’ format. Consisting of seven modules, the PTT program is designed to provide health professional students with opportunities to develop skills in teaching, feedback, assessment, teamwork and communication, in preparation for peer teaching and future practice. This study sought to compare ‘blended learning’ with ‘online only’ delivery. ‘Blended learning’ format, included a one-day face-to-face session, requiring 9 facilitators. Students participated in small group learning activities, and were formatively assessed on their teaching and feedback skills. ‘Online only’ delivery occurred across three weeks, using asynchronous and synchronous activities, requiring 11 facilitators. Students completed a post-course questionnaire. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and thematic analysis. Eighty-five students completed the program; 36 in ‘blended learning’ and 49 ‘online only’ format, from six disciplines (health sciences, medicine, nursing, pharmacy, oral health and public health). All (100%) ‘blended learning’ and 67% ‘online only’ participants completed the questionnaire. Both sets valued the online reading, discussion boards, videos, with opportunities to practice teaching skills, give and receive feedback. They reported an increased understanding of the roles of other disciplines. However, the ‘face-to-face’ component had some associated benefits, including a more positive attitude towards interprofessional learning and intention to teach. While ‘online only’ delivery of the program provided an effective alternative to the traditional ‘blended learning’ format, additional ‘real-time’ sessions may improve student engagement.


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How to Cite

An Interprofessional Peer Teacher Training program for health professional students: ‘face to face’ versus ‘online only’. (2023). Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice, 20(1), 71-89.

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