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OBJECTIVES To study the effects of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) Interdisciplinary Leadership Development Program (ILDP) on interprofessional attitudes, beliefs, and use of skills. ILDP is a collaboration among five campus-based U.S. Maternal and Child Health Bureau-funded training programs. These programs included Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND), Nutrition, Pediatric Dentistry, Public Health, and Social Work.

METHODS Using a post-test design, participants in the ILDP from the five training programs were contacted to complete a web-based survey. LEND and Public Health graduates who had not participated in the ILDP were recruited for comparison. Using scales and open-ended questions, we asked graduates to rate the influence of ILDP on their attitudes/beliefs about interprofessional practice, to report the frequency of use of interdisciplinary skills, and to describe those influences on the use of skills in some detail.

RESULTS The 208 respondents represented 60% of the graduates from 2001 through 2008. Graduates reported that the yearlong Interdisciplinary Leadership Development Program, a supplement to conventional discipline-based training influenced their interprofessional attitudes, beliefs, and the use of interprofessional skills. In particular, a 3-day Leadership Intensive workshop enhanced graduates’ understanding of individual leadership practices and heightened their appreciation of the assets and challenges of others working in groups.

CONCLUSIONS With increasing focus on interprofessional health teams, many evaluations of training neither describe nor measure explicitly the elements of training that enable students to develop interprofessional attitudes, beliefs, and skills. In an evaluation that demonstrated these outcomes, we have described the key role of intentional, personal leadership training in producing these outcomes. Interprofessional training programs should be expected to provide logic models for the relationship between training and the desired outcomes.