Examining Course Credits, Placement, and Integration of Pathophysiology and Anatomy and Physiology within PharmD Curriculum

Meagan L. Dias, Kaitlin J. Armstrong, Megan M. Pantos, Joshua J. Spooner, Daniel R. Kennedy
2020 American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education  
Objective. To examine the placement of pathophysiology, anatomy, and physiology within the curricula of US pharmacy schools and colleges for variations in program length, prerequisites, institution type, geographic region, and establishment date.Methods. The websites of 146 pharmacy programs were examined for information related to pathophysiology, anatomy, and physiology courses and instruction. Eight programs listed uninterpretable or incomplete website data and were excluded, producing a
more » ... l sample size of 138 programs. Data were analyzed to determine differences in curricular placement, credit hours, and integration.Results. The majority (65.3%) of pathophysiology courses were incorporated into the curriculum by integration, while some (14.5%) had both stand-alone and integrated pathophysiology courses. The remaining programs (20.2%) had stand-alone pathophysiology courses only. Of those with stand-alone pathophysiology courses, the mean number of credit hours was 5. Most programs (76.1%) required anatomy and/or physiology as a prerequisite or as part of the professional program, with significantly more public programs than private programs requiring it as a prerequisite (77.9% vs 48.6%).Conclusion. Pathophysiology is taught in diverse formats throughout US pharmacy schools, with the only consensus among programs being that it belongs in the professional curriculum. While the majority of programs teach pathophysiology as an integrated course, stand-alone courses are also common. There is also great diversity in the type of instruction used in anatomy and physiology courses. While every program requires students to complete anatomy and physiology courses, these are commonly taught as part of the professional curriculum or are prerequisites. Overall, there are few significant differences in the instruction of these subjects among US pharmacy schools.
doi:10.5688/ajpe8025 pmid:34283751 pmcid:PMC7712727 fatcat:j2zhlv7cnvecpgx2ahqtfh7ivq