Healthcare students’ experiences of a Collaborative Online International Learning initiative on wound care and interprofessional education: an exploratory study

Sharon Neill, Deirdre O'Donnell, Andrea Shepherd, Christina Parker, Sandra Johnston, Karen Theobald

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review

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Interprofessional practice has been identified as essential to designing and delivering health services that are safe, efficient, and sustainable. The importance of effective interprofessional practice is exemplified in the care of a person who has a complex wound, where the expertise of a range of healthcare professionals optimises health outcomes. Effective preparedness of health professional graduates to engage in successful team-working and shared decision-making are profiled as key proficiencies in healthcare programmes (WHO, 2010). In addition, internationalisation of learning offers opportunities to consider the global context of healthcare policy and practice (Mihut et al. 2013). While a range of initiatives are developed to support online or distance learning in wound care and interprofessional learning, there is little evidence of the impact of collaborative online international learning (COIL) in this area (Martinengo et al. 2020). Using a global classroom approach, this study explored healthcare students’ experiences of a COIL initiative on interprofessional practice in complex wound care.


The study used a descriptive exploratory design. A convenience sample of undergraduate healthcare students from Queensland University of Technology (QUT, Australia) and Ulster University (UU, N. Ireland) participated in a COIL initiative which comprised a 2-hour online global masterclass facilitated by two expert tissue viability nurses. Evaluative data were collected using a post-masterclass anonymous online survey, analysed using descriptive statistics. Four online focus groups were facilitated. Data were audio-recorded, transcribed and analysed using thematic analysis. Relevant ethical approvals were obtained


Sixty-eight students took part in the masterclass and twenty-two completed the post-masterclass survey (QUT n=3; UU n= 19; 32% response rate). Participants reported improvements in their understanding of wound assessment and management and how a range of professionals contribute to wound care, awareness of clinical guidelines in wound care, and increased confidence in wound assessment. Participants also reported positive feedback on the benefits of COIL.


Healthcare students who engaged in an online international, interprofessional education collaboration demonstrated improved understanding and awareness of complex wound care alongside developing insights into interprofessional working and international healthcare policy.


Martinengo, L., Yeo, N.J.Y., Markandran, K, D.O., Olsson, M., Kyaw, M.B., and Tudor Carr (2020) Digital health professions education on chronic wound management: A systematic review. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 104, 103512

Mihut, G., Altbach, P.G. and De Wit, H. (2013) Understanding Higher Education Internationalization. Global Perspectives on Higher Education. Rotterdam: SensePublishers.

World Health Organisation (2010). Framework for action on interprofessional education and collaborative practice. Available from:;jsessionid=3656EDA264650E3DCF7A5CB70C903D47?sequence=1 [Accessed 8th February 2023].
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusUnpublished - 26 Apr 2023
EventSociety of Tissue Viability Annual Conference 2023: Solving skin and wound challenges together - Kingsgate Conference Centre, Peterborough, United Kingdom
Duration: 26 Apr 202327 Apr 2023


ConferenceSociety of Tissue Viability Annual Conference 2023
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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