A Gap Analysis of the Northeastern School of Pharmacy Curriculum from P1-P3 Year

Research Category: Health Sciences
Presenter: Kathryn Owen
Additional Authors: Jose Roman
PI: Jenny Van Amburgh

Motivation/Problem Statement: The current pharmacy curriculum at Northeastern University involves two semesters of Pharmacology and Medicinal Chemistry (PCOL) followed by four semesters of Comprehensive Disease Management (CDM). These courses cover over 900 drugs alongside their mechanisms of action, their side effects, and their utility. Due to the evolving nature of pharmacy, a frequently updated and cohesive curriculum including essential medications is crucial to ensure students are able to recognize therapies and appropriately treat patients.

Approach: Through a “gap analysis”, our research attempts to address if a curriculum-based PharmD formulary, combined with self directed learning assessments during co-op experiences, would allow faculty to more effectively plan the curriculum and help students retain pertinent drug information for their professional development. Our gap analysis draws comparisons between a PharmD formulary (based on the current top 200 prescription drugs, top 100 over the counter medications, and top 50 inpatient drugs) to the medications currently taught in PCOL and CDM.

Results: At present (85/268) 31% of the top formulary drugs are covered in the pharmacy curriculum and (245/1587) 15% of drugs covered in PCOL are covered in CDM.

Conclusion: These comparisons and analyses is a resource for faculty to know which drugs are most utilized in general practice so that they may focus their learning objectives to enhance the students’ learning while providing them with the most up to date information.