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Competition the new collaboration? : employing inter-team competitiveness to motivate health students to learn together

posted on 2017-12-06, 00:00 authored by Monica Moran, R Boyce, L Nissen
In the health workforce, competition between the professions for recognition and professional status has long been seen as an impediment to the development of interprofessional teams (Light, 1988; O'Reilly, 2000). Entrenched professional hierarchies have tended to favour some professional groups leading to professional growth and significant fmancial and status rewards, while others have experienced lower status and perceived or indeed real lack of recognition (Salhani & Coulter, 2009). The pattern of jostling for supremacy begins as soon as a student steps into his/her professional training program and appears to be well developed by the time the new health professional reaches the workplace. How then can educators in the health professions motivate students to see beyond their own professional boundaries, and develop collaborative ways of valuing and working with others outside their own professional groups: to negotiate ways of power sharing rather than power struggling (Salhani & Coulter, 2009)? This chapter will explore the mobilizing aspects of competition as a driver to motivate health sciences students to learn with and about one another in an interprofessional team structure. It will draw on student feedback and reflection on participation in an interprofessional team competition where groups of students representing up to nine health professions compete against one another for a prize and public recognition. The literature around teams, competition and social learning theories will be used to provide a multifaceted lens in which to explore the student experience.


Parent Title

Sociology of interprofessional health care practice : critical reflections and concrete solutions.

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Nova Science Publishers

Place of Publication

New York, NY

Open Access

  • No

External Author Affiliations

University of Queensland; University of Southern Queensland;

Era Eligible

  • Yes



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