Teaching Development Grants
Completed TDG Projects

Diverse Learning Experience

Evaluating the Impact and Feasibility of a Cross-disciplinary, Library-based Mindful Practice Programme for Healthcare and Human Service Students


Mindfulness, or the quality of having moment-to-moment non-judgmental awareness, is a learnable skill which helps develop self-awareness. It is used in health professions education overseas to reduce psychological distress and improve interpersonal skills. In the academic year 2013-2014, experiential mindful practice was implemented as a compulsory part of the HKU MBBS programme. The objectives of this study were to provide a structured opportunity for students to engage in mindful practice with peers in the healthcare disciplines, to enhance psychological wellbeing and compassion, and to examine how to consolidate and support experiential learning of mindfulness outside the classroom.

All students reported noticeable benefits, including calming the body or mind, being aware of their needs or being able to enjoy the personal time. The programme did not significantly enhance compassion as the time to explore the topic was limited. Most sessions ended up being uni-disciplinary as the majority of participants were medical students, yet they would welcome the idea as an opportunity to understand concerns from students of other backgrounds. While basic training could be offered by teachers in the classroom, follow up practice beyond the formal classroom could be facilitated by students as peer learning groups with support from teachers.

Principal Investigator

Dr. J.Y. Chen, Department of Family Medicine and Primary Care, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine Contact

Project level

Programme-level project

Project Completion

June 2015

Deliverables (HKU Portal Login Required)

  1. Training materials for facilitator: an overview of each mindful practice session with the topics, activities, discussion questions and useful resources. Download
  2. Project report based on the findings of this exploratory study: evaluating the effectiveness of mindful practice, the impact of cross-disciplinary learning and the feasibility of teaching and learning in this format, which will help inform the development and extension of a mindful practice curriculum for health care professions students. Download