Research Article

Therapeutic drug monitoring: an e-learning resource

Krupa Samani

University of Manchester

Received:

30 Sept 2008

Accepted:

18 Dec 2008

Published:

29 Mar 2009

Volume:

2

Issue:

2

Keywords:

therapeutic drug monitoring, e-learning resource, pharmacokinetics

Abstract:

The main aim of this project was to produce an interactive e-learning resource explaining the pharmacokinetic principles related to therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM). The target audience for the resource were scientists at Manchester Royal Infirmary and the intended learning outcome for the users was to improve their understanding of the pharmacology behind the results they generate. The null hypothesis stated that the resource would not cause a significant improvement in the users' understanding of pharmacokinetics. The ADDIE Instructional Design Model was applied to the learning situation. A pre-project questionnaire allowed for a needs analysis to be conducted, determining the current level of knowledge. Design and development involved production of project plans and storyboards and the entire resource was produced using Opus Professional. The resource was distributed via compact discs, along with pre- and post-resource questionnaires to permit analysis. Knowledge was compared before and after using the resource to establish the effectiveness of the resource, and the functionality of the resource was evaluated. The needs questionnaire results outlined the existing level of knowledge as being varied and provided suggestions for possible concepts to include in the resource. A more precise and accurate definition of TDM, why it is carried out, and the pharmacokinetic parameters were apparent in the post-resource questionnaire results. Confidence in the understanding and interpretation of data produce was not significantly improved (Wilcoxon matched pairs signed ranks test, n = 14, P = 0.13), while confidence in the understanding of pharmacokinetic parameters was significantly improved (Wilcoxon matched pairs signed ranks test, n = 16, P = 0.01). About 81% of the audience found the resource very helpful to understanding TDM and all of the users found it either easy to use or very easy to use. The post-resource results showed that confidence in the understanding of pharmacokinetics was improved, indicating that the learning outcomes of the user were achieved thus allowing the null hypothesis to be rejected. However, confidence in understanding the data generated was not improved, suggesting a possible aspect to be developed if the project was to be repeated. Functionality of the resource was successful as users found the resource easy to use and navigate.

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