Interprofessional education (IPE) is leading the way that health professions students are learning together to work together in order to best meet the needs of patients in our evolving health care practice environments.

What is IPE?

Interprofessional education occurs when students from two or more professions learn about, from and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes.  World Health Organization 2010

Four competency domains form the core of interprofessional learning:

  • Values and Ethics for Interprofessional Practice
  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • Interprofessional Communication
  • Teams and Teamwork

Interprofessional Education Collaborative 2011

Breaking Out of Educational "Silos"

In 2012, the University of Iowa Health Sciences Policy Council created an IPE Steering Committee consisting of faculty representatives from all the Health Science Colleges (HSC), as well as student representation. They were charged with developing a comprehensive, coordinated IPE plan that provides the optimal learning environment for preparing health professional students to successfully practice together. As a foundational blueprint and catalyst, this plan will help integrate existing IPE resources, implement a coordinated curriculum, support faculty development, collaboration and innovation, and create a sustainable learning infrastructure.

Early Accomplishments

The IPE Steering Committee’s year-long, in-depth strategic planning process has been transformative for its members and has already produced some notable outcomes that exceeded original expectations.  In addition to completing a strategic plan, accomplishments of this productive Committee include:

  • An introductory IPE presentation and faculty development workshop conducted by University of Manitoba IPE faculty (May 2013)
  • Launch of a 18-month pilot IPE course for 500 early career health professions students in the HSC (September 2013)
  • Establishment of UI Students for Interprofessional Education (February 2013)
  • Three student-led IPE learning opportunities (March-September 2013)
  • Development of an IPE website ( )  (January 2013)
  • New HSC collaborations on IPE-focused activities and educational forums (Ongoing)
  • Continued collaborations with existing IPE activities (e.g., Clinical Beginnings course)

A Proposed IPE Strategic Plan for the UI Health Science Colleges*


To promote excellence in educational preparation and practice in prevention, wellness, and healthcare through team-based, interprofessional collaborative learning experiences.


Interprofessional education at The University of Iowa will promote an institutional culture, learning environment, and infrastructure that produce graduates recognized for their ability to effectively engage as collaborative team members in healthcare settings.

Guiding Principles and Values

Interprofessional education (IPE) in the Health Sciences Colleges (HSC) at the University of Iowa is guided by the following principles and supporting values*:

  1. There is shared understanding and appreciation of IPE by faculty, students, staff and healthcare professionals.
    Supporting value: Respect
  2. IPE is integrated across the HSC curricula and learning environments.
    Supporting values: Learning, Innovation, Collaboration, Engagement
  3. IPE is a dynamic, evolving initiative that benefits from ongoing evaluation and revision.
    Supporting values: Excellence, Innovation

*Essential Components of Supporting Values:

  • Learning: Mixed methods, multiple environments, continuous learning across career paths
  • Respect: Honoring professional differences, contributions and approaches to learning
  • Innovation: New approaches that catalyze curriculum, modalities and environments
  • Collaboration: Effective teamwork across professions, across learning settings and with the public
  • Engagement:  Dynamic participation of students, faculty, the community (organizations and providers)
  • Excellence: Standards, evaluation and rewards.

Strategic Goals

Strategic Area 1: Logistics and Sustainability

Goal: Establish a comprehensive IPE Center with authority to implement curriculum and other education-related activities across the HSC and with dedicated resources that ensure the ability to effectively implement the IPE plan.

Strategic Area 2: Faculty Development

Goal: Create a recognized cadre of faculty with expertise in teaching IPE competencies.

Strategic Area 3: Curricula and Learning Opportunities

Goal: Establish competency-based IPE as the standard for educating health professions students.

Strategic Area 4: Student Engagement

Goal: Encourage and facilitate student-led leadership and learning in interprofessional education.
*Pending approval of the UI Health Science Policy Council

IPE Steering Committee Members

 MemberCollege/DepartmentAddressPhoneDavid AspreyMedicine/Physician Assistant1216E MERF335-8435Mary BergNursing336 NB335-7045Tony BrennemanMedicine/Physician Assistant5157 WL335-8896Ellen CramNursing354 NB335-7052Lily GarciaDentistry/Associate Dean for EducationN310 DSB353-5586Joel GordonMedicine/NephrologyE300G GH356-3972Janet HoskingNursing/CNO-Nursing EducationW431 GH356-4304Ryan JacobsenPharmacyCC101 GH356-5277Mike KellyPharmacy110 PHAR335-7644Kirstin MangesSIPE Representative/Nursing3 JCW JCP356-2231Nick MayStaff/Medicine/Health Care Information SystemsBT1000 GH384-5567Gary MilavetzPharmacy/PharmaceuticsS419 PHAR335-8877Richard ShieldsMedicine/Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences1-252 MEB335-9803Tanya Uden-HolmanPublic Health/AdministrationS149 CPHB384-4070Janna LawrenceHardin Library for Health Sciences AdministrationADMIN HLHS335-9870Tom VaughnPublic Health/Health Management and PolicyN216 CPHB384-3819Paula WeistrofferDentistry/PeriodonticsS-456 DSB335-7231