Jump to content

FHS8104 International Studies on Older Adult Care Transitions (iSTEP)

Course description for academic year 2021/2022

Contents and structure

The course focuses on ways to improve older adult care transitions to and from the acute care system (emergency department and hospital). The course is relevant for students with a background in health (e.g. physiotherapy, nursing, occupational therapy, medicine, psychology, public health and social work).

Students will acquire knowledge and skills to a). critique the older adult care transition literature using key integrated knowledge translation concepts (e.g., knowledge-to-action pathways, complex systems, sustainability and scale-up, patient engagement, evaluation frameworks), in ways that show how research evidence can be used to guide healthcare change, and b). to understand how contexts influence patient care pathways in different jurisdictions and localities and how changes could be implemented in those various contexts.

A total of eight online seminars each of three hours duration will take place during February to May, followed by two weeks of placement during autumn Some seminars in this course will have a lecture style format and will provide basic information about these concepts. Students will be required to apply this knowledge to their own research areas in subsequent seminars, and in doing so will start to develop a ‘toolbox’ of skills required to help them bridge the gap between research evidence and healthcare reform. Below goes an overview over the content of the online seminars:

  1. Seminar:

1) Student/staff introductions (round table discussion) - 40 minutes.

2) Review of webinar and broader project content - 40 minutes.

3) Student questions - 20 minutes.

4) An overview of the knowledge to Action cycle, implementation science theory, and the research pipeline (lecture style format) - 40 minutes

2. Seminar:

1) An introduction to care transitions (including discussion of assigned readings) - 40 minutes.

2) Small group discussions (‘aligning your studying with care transitions’) - 20 minutes.

3) Student Ted Talks (5-minute presentation & 5-minute discussion each) - ‘what is your research and how does it align with care transitions and the knowledge to action approach - 80 minutes.

4) Wrap-up: Where are we similar and different? - 20 minutes.

3. Seminar:

1) The role of contexts (legal, cultural and organizational etc.) (including discussion of assigned readings) - 40 minutes.

2) Guest presentation #1: Canada’s healthcare system - 60 minutes

3) Guest presentation #2: Norway’s healthcare system - 60 minutes

4. Seminar:

1)Online discussion - similarities and differences from last webinar presenters - 20 minutes.

2) Topic Presentation (including discussion of assigned readings) - 60 minutes

3) Small group discussions and reporting back (what does this mean to me?) - 60 minutes

3) Prepping for local preceptor network discussions in June - 20 minutes

5. Seminar:

1) Guest presentation #3: Care transitions according to the acute care sector (Canada) - 60 minutes.

2) Guest presentation #4: Care transitions according to the acute care sector (Norway) - 60 minutes.

3) In camera discussion (similarities and differences) - 40 minutes.

6. Seminar:

1) Presentation (including discussion of assigned readings) - 60 minutes

2) The role of Policy - 60 minutes

3) Small group discussions followed by a report back (what does this mean to me?) - 40 minutes

7. Seminar:

1) Guest presentation #5: Care transitions according to the community sector (Canada) - 60 minutes.

2) Guest presentation #4: Care transitions according to the community sector (Norway) - 60 minutes.

3) Online discussion (similarities and differences) - 40 minutes.


8. Seminar:

Preparations for student exchange in the Autumn.


In their placement, students will perform site visits to nursing homes and emergency units, and meetings with healthcare leaders and co- students to compare and contrast international nursing home emergency unit/hospital approaches). All students and team members will then participate in an in-person capstone workshop.


Target group Health and social professionals


Admission requirements Relevant bachelor’s degrees, equivalent to 180 ECTS in health and social professionals such as physiotherapists, occupational therapists, nurses, social workers and social educators.

Learning Outcome

A student who has completed the course should have the following learning outcomes

defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:


The student...

  • has profound knowledge of challenges related to care transfers based on extensive overview over the most important international research literature.
  • has advanced knowledge of the ways in culture and underlying healthcare systems affect care transition approaches and the need for different research strategies.


The student...

  • can position own research and analyse the broader older adult care transition literature according to key knowledge-to-action paradigms.
  • has achieved to develop and use a ‘tool box’ of practice-based health services research skills, applicable to both their own and a broader range of older adult care transition topics.

General competence:

The student...

  • can analyse and critique the older adult care transition literature using key integrated knowledge translation concepts.
  • can understand challenges and opportunities of care transitions in context (national and local).
  • can communicate their knowledge both by scientific and popular forms of dissemination.

Teaching methods

Classes in this course will consist of:

  • Lecture style seminars,
  • Student-led presentations and small group discussions, and
  • Seminars led by healthcare stakeholders (e.g., decision-makers and providers).

Students are expected to critically review the assigned readings provided in advance of each seminars and are expected to engage actively in each seminar discussion.

Efforts will be made to provide learning choices for students by presenting materials using different modes (text, voice, video), creating multiple avenues for students' engagement (individual and group activities), and allowing student to express the newly acquired knowledge, skills and competencies in multiple ways (paper, presentation, video, poster). Supervision will be given on draft of the individual essay. Instructors are responsible for setting the climate, selecting the content and curating the resources, and supporting the discourse. The course will be held in English.

Compulsory learning activities

  1. 80% participation during eight online sessions
  2. Posting at least two comments on student posts on Canvas
  3. Writing a draft of the individual essay (max. 2000 words)


Fulfilled course requirements are valid next semester. The course requirements must be fulfilled in order to take the exam.


A written, individual essay, 4000 words +/- 10%.

Grading scale

Passed / not passed

New exam When the grade not passed is given, the students can improve their essay and hand it in for the new exam.