The University of Toronto Centre for the Study of Pain — Interfaculty Pain Curriculum (UTCSP-IPC) is a 20-hour integrated, interdisciplinary, pain curriculum for pre-licensure health science students. The UTCSP-IPC was developed to address current information, misbeliefs, and gaps in pain education and to provide students in the health professions an opportunity to learn with, from, and about each other. The goal of the curriculum is to improve pain knowledge and understanding of interprofessional pain assessment and management processes. The UTCSP-IPC was implemented in March 2002 and became a mandatory part of health science curricula at the University of Toronto in 2004.

Every March, approximately 1000 students from Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy, Physical Therapy, and the Physician Assistant Program participate in the UTCSP-IPC. Using cases based on real patients, they complete comprehensive assessments of multiple factors that contribute to the pain experience, present comprehensive pain management plans justifying their choices, describe multiprofessional and interprofessional strategies for the planning, intervention, and monitoring of pain management outcomes and describe ethical, legal, social, and political issues that may impact on patients’ pain management. They begin to develop the skills required to render sound, evidence-based, clinical judgments needed for pain assessment and management within their individual and interdisciplinary, team scope of practice.

For detailed discussion of the UTCSP-IPC, its development, and program evaluation, please see the following peer-reviewed articles, available online:

Hunter J, Watt-Watson J, McGillion M, Raman-Wilms L, Cockburn L, Lax L, Stinson J, Cameron A, Dao T, Pennefather P, Schreiber M, Librach L, Kavanagh T, Gordon A, Cullen N, Mock D, & Salter M. (2008). An Interfaculty Pain Curriculum: Lessons learned from six years experience, Pain, 140, 74-86.

Watt-Watson J, Hunter J, Pennefather P, Librach L, Raman-Wilms L, Schreiber M, Lax L, Stinson J, Dao T, Gordon A, Mock D, & Salter M. (2004). An integrated undergraduate pain curriculum based on IASP curricula for six health science faculties. Pain, 10,140-148.