Program

PO1-7-12

Pharmacology Education at Ahmadu Bello University Zaria Nigeria: 2-A Retrospective 3-Year Analysis of Final Year Bachelor of Pharmacy Research Projects

[Speaker] Helen O. Kwanashie:1
[Co-author] Ahmad S. Jumare:1
1:Dept. of Pharmacology & Therapeutics, Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria

Background: The final year research project is usually a core course for most undergraduate programmes worldwide. A 3-year retrospective analysis of pharmacology vis-a-vis other final year projects (a 4-credit unit compulsory course) in all five departments of the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria, was undertaken with a view to understanding and improving education-cum-training in research.
Methods: All 458 projects carried out over the penultimate three academic sessions beginning from 2013/14, were analysed for various indices such as number allocated to departments, student's sex, student's residency years and project's subject area focus.
Results: Numerical allocation of students to the five departments for their projects was found to be equitable at 20.74% each for pharmacology, pharmacognosy and pharmaceutics, 20.09% for pharmaceutical chemistry and 17.69% for the more recently founded clinical pharmacy with fewer supervising staff. However, female ratio percent(SEM) was highest for pharmacology at 46.60(9.83) and lowest for pharmaceutical chemistry at 24.23(4.12) (p<0.05, LSD), in contrast to 38.50(5.96) for pharmacognosy, 34.20(2.21) for clinical pharmacy and 32.23(8.77) for pharmaceutics, against a Faculty average of 35.63(1.95). With SEM=0.01 across board, residency years at project completion was 5.26 for both pharmacology and pharmaceutical chemistry, but different for clinical pharmacy (5.37), pharmacognosy (5.43) and especially pharmaceutics (5.63); Faculty average being 5.39. Many projects had both primary and secondary subject area focus, sometimes in another department; but overall, the focus was mostly on pharmacology (255 out of 458 projects = 55.68%), while others were as indicated - pharmaceutics (31.00%), pharmacognosy (29.91%), clinical pharmacy (21.40%) and pharmaceutical chemistry (10.26%). This calls for optimisation in the teaching of pharmacological research methods to students during their pre-project years. Since students' final year projects usually reflect supervising academic staff's research interests, it is possible that pharmacology is also the principal research subject area for academic staff in the Faculty - regardless of their departments. This speculation as well as the sex and residency years disparities observed, are being investigated further.
Conclusions: Most of the final year research projects in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Ahmadu Bello University Zaria Nigeria, had pharmacology as their subject area focus.
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