School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Gary Smith


continuing pharmacy education, experiences, pharmacist, pharmacy education


Adult and Continuing Education | Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences


The purpose of this phenomenological study was to describe select Tennessee pharmacists’ experiences, motivation, and preferences in the context of continuing pharmacy education (CPE). The pharmacists’ experiences, motivation, and preferences related to CPE were generally defined as participating in CPE programming in a manner that meets the needs of the pharmacist. Also, select pharmacists were defined as pharmacists with at least six hours of continuing pharmacy education credit within the last year. This study explored how 12 pharmacist participants in Tennessee experienced CPE as well as what motivated them to attend CPE activities. Additionally, the study investigated pharmacists’ preferences in relation to CPE delivery methods. Individual interviews, virtual focus groups, and journal assignments were used to collect data. Data were analyzed via memoing, open-coding, transcendental phenomenological analysis, and via the analysis of emerging themes. The following research questions were explored: (1) How do select pharmacists describe their experiences with CPE in Tennessee? (2) What reasons do participants describe as their motivation to attend CPE activities? (3) In terms of design and delivery, what preferences do participants have in relation to CPE activities? (4) How do participants describe the impact of CPE on pharmacy practice? The major themes that emerged as a part of the investigation of pharmacists’ experiences, motivation, and preferences in the context of continuing pharmacy education were (a) Impact on Patients’ Lives, (b) Networking Opportunities (c) Licensure and Certification Requirements and (d) Increasing Knowledge. The results of this study will hopefully guide leaders in the profession of pharmacy as they develop new models for CPE and pharmacists as they seek to gain knowledge to improve the practice of pharmacy.