5 Activities for Pharmacy Preceptors to Include on Rotations


Serving as a preceptor is a great way to train pharmacy students to become skilled pharmacists.

Serving as a preceptor is a great way to train pharmacy students to become skilled pharmacists. Whether you are developing your first rotation or looking for innovative ideas, pharmacy students will certainly benefit from your expertise. Check out these 5 activities to include on your pharmacy rotation.

Rotation Pre-test

When I served as a drug information preceptor, I would always give my students a rotation pre-test on the first day. This is a great way to assess students’ knowledge and to help them succeed on your rotation. The format can be multiple choice or free response. I used a mixture of both to evaluate students’ knowledge base. I also acted as a potential caller to our drug information center, and students obtained background information about the drug information request. This helped to instill confidence in students prior to responding to their first question. This can be applied to any rotation setting including hospital, ambulatory care, or community.

Journal Club

Journal club is a great way for students and preceptors to stay up-to-date on current clinical studies. I would recommend instructing students to select a clinical study published within the past year for their journal club presentation. Students generally have free access through their university to reputable search databases such as MEDLINE, Embase, and International Pharmaceutical Abstracts to locate primary literature. Invite your pharmacist colleagues and other health care professionals to the students’ presentations. Encourage the pharmacy students to be concise with a presentation length of approximately 15-20 minutes.

Final Case Presentation

Case presentations are a great way for pharmacy students to showcase their pharmacotherapy and disease state knowledge. Students can select their favorite case from the rotation and discuss the information through a PowerPoint presentation or handout format. Educate students to remove all patient personal identifying information. The presentation can include disease state background information from the most up-to-date guidelines, a detailed list of the patient’s medications, pharmacotherapy recommendations, and clinical interventions. Encourage students to use reputable resources for references.

Class Lecture Participation

Involving pharmacy students in your class lectures is a great way to enhance their communication skills, especially if they are considering pursuing a residency. If you teach at a pharmacy school, then make sure to involve pharmacy students in your lecture. Students can create a short case (around 10 minutes) to present during class to promote active learning. Your rotation students can ask the class questions about the case and create an interactive discussion.

Article Publication

Consider involving rotation students in your research. This can develop into a longitudinal project that continues after the rotation is completed. If you have created an innovative rotation activity, then you can collaborate with the students to write an article for publication. This can help to enhance students’ research skills and knowledge of the publication process. I published articles with my rotation students and received great feedback that it helped them in their careers and when applying for residencies.

Congratulations on serving as a preceptor, and hopefully these activity ideas will help you provide an innovative experience for your pharmacy students!

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