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Technology in Precepting

Tasha Woodall, PharmD, BCGP, CPP

Co-Director, MAHEC Center for Healthy Aging

Residency Program Director, PGY2 Geriatrics

Associate Professor of Clinical Education, UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy

Clinical Associate Professor, UNC School of Medicine

Technology is more and more of a driving force in experiential and didactic education as the latest generations of students become increasingly comfortable with its use. Used correctly, technology can enhance connectivity between learners while engaging them in new and exciting ways. Nonetheless, many challenges exist, including cost, time to implement, the possibility of distraction or dependency, and issues with professionalism and digital etiquette.

Application of learning theory can help preceptors structure their use of technology in a more meaningful and purposeful way. For instance, Kolb’s Learning Cycle provides a useful framework for thinking about how to link technology-based learning activities with specific learning objectives.

Ask yourself… Where does this technology-based activity fit within the learning cycle?

What opportunities exist to incorporate technology at each stage?

Bullock A, Webb K. Postgrad Med J 2015;91:646-650.

Simulation, social media, and remote learning can all play a role in maximizing the effectiveness and efficiency of learning for students on introductory or advanced pharmacy practice experiences. Below are some example tools to “play around” with in each of these categories. With any of these, it is helpful to conclude the activity with a reflection or debrief (focus on right half of Kolb’s learning cycle above).


  1. Banis T. EHR Go. EHR Go. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  2. InSimu – The Virtual Patient Simulator for Clinical Training and Assessment. InSimu. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  3. Dotstorming. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  4. Prudencio J, Wongwiwatthananukit S, Lozano A, Xu Y. Instagram as a tool to enhance pharmacy student learning of ambulatory care pharmacy. Curr Pharm Teach Learn. 2021;13(2):134-138. doi:10.1016/j.cptl.2020.09.007
  5. Pisano J, Pettit N, Bartlett A, et al. Social media as a tool for antimicrobial stewardship. Am J Infect Control. 2016;44(11):1231-1236. doi:10.1016/j.ajic.2016.07.005
  6. American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). ASHP statement on use of social media by pharmacy professionals: developed through the ASHP pharmacy student forum and the ASHP section of pharmacy informatics and technology and approved by the ASHP Board of Directors on April 13, 2012, and by the ASHP House of Delegates on June 10, 2012. Am J Health-Syst Pharm AJHP Off J Am Soc Health-Syst Pharm. 2012;69(23):2095-2097. doi:10.2146/sp120011
  7. mmhmm | Video call companion app and quick video recorder. mmhmm. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  8. Presentations and videos with engaging visuals for hybrid teams | Prezi. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  9. Slido – Audience Interaction Made Easy. Slido. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  10. Interactive presentation software. Mentimeter. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  11. Host interactive online meetings | Poll Everywhere. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  12. Google Sites. Accessed November 1, 2022.
  13. Screencastify | Simple Video Creation Software. Accessed November 1, 2022.
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