In This Section

The Patient-Oriented Problem Solving (POPS) System in Pharmacology consists of a series of exercises that contain simulations of clinical problems. The exercises have been designed to be used in small group meeting sessions to supplement the teaching of pharmacology to first- or second-year students in the health professions.

Each exercise is designed for a group of four students but can be modified for larger or smaller groups as needed. Each student is given a portion of the information required to solve the problem. Thus, the students must exchange information and work together to arrive at the solutions.

Each exercise includes a pretest and a posttest, providing a mechanism for measuring learner achievement. Both the pretest and the posttest are designed to be completed by the students individually. One problem-solving exercise or simulation usually requires one group meeting period of 2 to 3 hours.

The exercises within The POPS System in Pharmacology were originally designed as sets of PDFs, which must be organized and distributed by the instructor. ASPET has partnered with DeckChair Learning to automate the exercises through online modules which are compatible with learning management systems. There are many advantages to the new automated POPS (A-POPS):

  • Automates and streamlines the entire POPS process
  • Allows students to meet remotely or in person
  • Groups can run simultaneously or asynchronously 
  • No need to schedule breakout rooms
  • No handouts to produce, collate, or distribute
  • Feedback and student performance metrics are extensive and obtained instantaneously
  • Response accuracy and time spent on each phase of the exercise are recorded for each group
  • Student performance on the pretest and posttest is scored for both accuracy and fluency
  • With instructor permission, students may revisit the exercise ad libitum. Students can add notes during the exercise and the notes are always available for later study.

Currently available A-POPS include:

  • Treatment of Essential Hypertension
  • Therapy of Diabetes Mellitus
  • Drug Treatment of Heart Failure
  • Pharmacokinetics Applied to the Treatment of Asthma
  • Chemotherapeutic Challenges

For more information and to purchase license keys for the A-POPS, please click the DeckChair logo below.

DeckChair logo


To access copies of the prior PDF versions, please click here: PDF Files for the POPS System in Pharmacology.

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