What is pre-service education
“Education” is defined as the process of giving or acquiring knowledge and skills and developing attitudes and values, especially at a school or university.1
“Training” likewise aims at improving the level of a trainee’s competence in a specific area and may be defined as the process of developing, changing or strengthening knowledge, skills and attitudes of a target group.
The expression “in-service training” refers to training of persons already employed, e.g. health providers working in the public or private sector.
“Pre-service” refers to activities which take place before a person takes up a job which requires specific training, i.e. before a person ‘enters service’. Properly speaking, also courses for graduates, in addition to those for undergraduates, are ‘pre-service courses’ if they provide the competence needed to perform new ‘services’.
In this website, the expressions “pre-service education” or “pre-service training” are used to refer to any structured activity aiming at developing or reinforcing knowledge and skills before a health care professional enters public health service or private practice.
1 Definitions used here are adapted from The Oxford Dictionary of English and other references available at Oxford Reference Online .