Interprofessional Geriatric Case Competition

The Interprofessional Geriatric Case Competition is a unique opportunity for graduate and undergraduate students from multiple disciplines and schools to come together as a team to develop a comprehensive, interprofessional plan of care for an older adult. Learn more with this video!

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Graduate (master’s and doctoral level), professional, and upper-level undergraduate students from across the University of Minnesota who are interested in geriatrics are encouraged to participate.

Students apply as individuals and will be assigned to an interprofessional team. Student teams will comprise four to five students from at least three University of Minnesota schools.  

We hope to involve people from across the health sciences, social work, speech and language, the Humphrey School, liberal arts, and more – anyone with an interest in geriatrics or participating in an interprofessional team.

Faculty: How to Integrate into Your Course

Faculty: Please consider including this interprofessional activity as you plan your fall class syllabi. Learn more:

  • Each student team will be assigned a coach, who is an expert in geriatrics from the community or University of Minnesota faculty. The coaches serve as advisors to the interprofessional student groups as they prepare for the competition, together developing collaborative solutions to a compelling geriatric health case.
  • Competition judges will include interprofessional experts in geriatrics from among University of Minnesota faculty and community agencies. Judges will provide constructive feedback to student teams at the competition as they collaborate on solutions to the geriatric health case.


  1. HISTORY OF UNIVERSITY COLLABORATION: The event is hosted annually by the Minnesota Northstar Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program and the Saint Louis University's Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program in the Gateway Geriatric Education Center. SLU first developed this case competition seven years ago. Other universities include A.T. Still University and schools in Missouri.
  2. SEEKING MINNESOTA SCHOOLS TO JOIN THE STUDENT LEARNING OPPORTUNITY: If your health science program has interest in joining this Inter-University competition, contact [email protected] for more information.
  3. SEEKING GWEP PARTNERS: More GWEPs are planning to participate in 2024. If your GWEP has interest in joining this Inter-GWEP, Inter-University competition, contact [email protected] for more information.

Volunteer Coaches & Judges

Volunteers are needed to serve as expert coaches and judges. We are looking for faculty, staff, and post-graduate and postdoctoral fellows/residents and community experts in geriatric care to offer support for this interprofessional activity.

Coaches for the Interprofessional Case Competition

Students apply as individuals and will be assigned to an interprofessional team with a coach, either a faculty member or community expert.  Coaches serve as mentors and consultants providing guidance.  They can offer feedback, raise questions, give comments on the presentation, and point the team to useful resources.  Coaches should not suggest specific solutions to the case.  Our experience indicates that coaches attended 2-4 meetings (including the orientation session) with teams and averaged five hours of time related to the competition over a one-month period.  A coach orientation will be held prior to the team orientation as well as an optional mid-competition meeting to discuss coaching questions.
Key Points:

  • Coaches will attend the virtual team orientation on Zoom, meet with their teams to help them get started, and be present at the competition to support their team.
  • Coaches will encourage the team to develop a quick plan at the orientation regarding how they will function, how they will communicate with each other, etc.
  • Coaches should plan to meet at least one additional time with their team, or additionally as mutually determined by the team and coach, and then spend 2-3 hours with their team during competition weeks.
  • One week before their presentation date, the teams should send their presentation draft to their coach and, if they wish, the coach can help them schedule a rehearsal.
  • The coach can assist the team by:
    • Encouraging them to set their first meeting
    • Keeping the team on track
    • Helping the team remain focused on the collaborative competencies
    • Advising the team regarding available resources (personal contacts, journal sources, books, individuals from other professions, etc.)
    • Encouraging the team to work together collaboratively
    • Helping teams set up a presentation rehearsal and offering feedback if they wish

It is important for faculty/professional coaches to allow students to do their own research, develop their own recommendations, and create their own presentation for the case competition.

Judges for the Interprofessional Case Competition

Judges will score online team presentations using a judging rubric and provide constructive feedback to student teams. Judges are expected to attend a one-hour virtual judging orientation in mid-October. Judging will be performed asynchronously over a three-day period in late October.

Key Points:

  1. Review the case information provided.
  2. A team of four to five students from different professions are asked to develop a comprehensive, interprofessional plan of care for the patient in this case to care for this patient and plan for discharge back to the community. The team has four weeks to meet, work together with their coach, conduct research, and devise the plan of care they will present to you.
  3. Their presentation should meet the criteria laid out in the case grading rubric.
  4. We will have two groups of judges, some participating asynchronously in late October. Other judges will be participating one evening in early November for the final competition. We will provide an orientation for each group of judges to give you a brief overview of the case and be ready to score. Some judges will work asynchronously; these judges will have online access to the recorded presentations and must submit scores on specific dates in late October (details TBD). The second group of judges will work synchronously in early November. 

General Comments on Judging:

  • Some students are undergraduates or are at the beginning of their discipline-specific professional education and have little experience in clinical settings. You can adjust your expectations accordingly and do not need to worry about the quality of the details or discipline-specific information.
  • Students may not always be 100 percent accurate with their medical suggestions, but should show evidence of reasonable rationale for planned actions.
  • We hope to see that the team presentations make a good attempt at the following:
    • Adequate analysis of the information provided to identify patient problems.
    • Clear evidence that the patient and care partners were the focus of care.
    • Recommendations for care interventions unburdened from concerns about health care financing or years of experience with entrenched beliefs.
    • Evidence of developing interprofessional competencies – working together as a team, valuing their own and others’ contributions, respectful teamwork, communication, values and ethics.
    • Ideally, teams will come up with some innovative strategies for managing challenges of care and teamwork in caring for the patient and family.
    • The presentation should indicate that there was intentional/deliberate interprofessional collaboration.
    • Evidence that team members learned more about each other and additional disciplines as they prepared their plan.
    • Evidence of self- and team-reflection on challenges and rewards of a variety of viewpoints and strengths on team and collaboration.

Coaches and judges will receive a one-year online subscription to Geriatrics at Your Fingertips.

Credit Options & IPE Approval

Students may be allowed to apply this experience to meeting course requirements and should confer with their instructors to determine if it meets their specific requirements. The following approvals have been acquired:

  • The Interprofessional Geriatric Case Competition is part of the 1Health interprofessional education curriculum at the University of Minnesota. This means that the Case Competition offers a valuable interprofessional learning experience that has been carefully designed to expand upon your skills and knowledge in preparation for your future as collaborative health professional.  Inclusion in the 1Health interprofessional education curriculum also means that upon completion of the Interprofessional Geriatric Case Competition, a record demonstrating your involvement in this experience will be added to your personal "1Health IPE Transcript" which can be accessed via the 1Health Database.  
  • Some students can earn credit for their participation for either clinical hours or credit within individual courses. We are actively reaching out to interprofessional course instructors to ask that they give “credit” for those students who participate in the competition.

Awards & Inter-University Competition

A distinguished multidisciplinary panel of judges with expertise in geriatric care will evaluate the team’s case presentation. All students will receive a one-year subscription to Geriatrics at Your Fingertips.

Prizes to be shared among team members will be awarded to first-, second-, and third-place teams. These include $500 for first place, $300 for second place, and $200 for third place.

The first-place team from University of Minnesota will compete at the Final Inter-university Geriatric Case Competition held in conjunction with Saint Louis University.  The competition will be live, virtual/online. A prize of $1,000 will be awarded to the winning team. Students from top teams will receive medallions, which can be worn at their graduation ceremonies.

Frequently Asked Questions

How are teams formed? Students register individually and are assigned to a team based on their discipline. The goal is to have at least 3-5 disciplines represented on each team.
What type of presentation do students need to make? Students will record a 20-minute video VoiceThread presentation (narrated slides with PowerPoint or Presi or Google Slides) for the local competition. If the team is selected for the Inter-university competition, they will present their slides via live Zoom, plus a 10–15-minute question-and-answer session with the judges. All students in the team are expected to participate in the presentation.
How will students learn to make a VoiceThread presentation? Students can access online tutorials in how to prepare a VoiceThread presentation, which will be provided. In addition, a one-hour training session on VoiceThread will be provided about two weeks after orientation.
Who are the judges the students will be presenting to? The panel of judges will consist of an interprofessional team of faculty, practitioners, and other community experts who have expertise in gerontology and geriatric care.
Who determines/writes the case for the competition? The topic of the case is determined based on current issues in geriatric care. An interprofessional team of healthcare faculty at the University of Minnesota and Saint Louis University lead the case writing and consult with geriatric experts on the year’s topic.
What level of student usually participates in this competition? The case competition is open to all health professional students, including bachelor’s level and master’s/doctoral levels. For undergraduate programs, participation in the junior or senior year is recommended. Undergraduate students who are not currently enrolled in a health professional program but are planning to apply to one post-graduation are also eligible.
How long do teams get to work on the case? The case is released to all participants at the orientation session in late September. Judging for the local competition occurs in late October, giving teams approximately four weeks to prepare. The Inter-university Competition takes place in early November, about a week after the local competition.
Is the same case used for the local and national competition? Yes.
Can students get optional credit or clinical hours for participating in the case competition? This is determined by individual course faculty, so students should check with the course instructor. Some faculty do allow optional credit or clinical hours for participating in the competition.
Will teams get feedback on their presentations? Teams will receive the overall summary score from the judging rubric and comments from the judges approximately 1-2 weeks following the competition. The local winning team that will be presenting at the Inter-university competition will receive their score and judges’ comments about four days prior to the competition.
Will my name or image be released for publicity of the competition? Yes, if you are the winner of the local or Inter-university national competition, you will be asked to sign a release form confirming your permission to share your name, image, and a video recording of your presentation. This will allow us to celebrate your success through news releases, articles, and our GWEP website.


We are seeking sponsorship from Minnesota community organizations serving older adults and caregivers. If you are able to co-sponsor this educational event, please click here to become a sponsor or contact [email protected]. Thank you!

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.

This project is part of the Minnesota Northstar GWEP, which is supported by the UMN Office of Academic Clinical Affairs.

Videos of Previous Competition Winners

Case Competition Medallions

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