The most important aspect of an encounter between a patient and his or her provider is the patient's ability to understand and implement the treatment plan and self-care instructions conferred by the provider. However, the literature in the field of patient-provider communication reveals that there is a noticeable gap in health literacy in certain patient populations that impairs their ability to understand pre-, during, and post-encounter paperwork, terminology, treatment plan, and critical self-care instructions. This has been shown to have detrimental consequences on patient health outcomes. The teach-back method, in which providers request patients to repeat key information discussed during the encounter in their own words, has been shown to successfully improve patient satisfaction, self-efficacy, and knowledge post-encounter. This paper seeks to investigate the impact of health literacy and teach-back on patient satisfaction, self-efficacy, and knowledge, and to determine the effect of a teach-back training intervention on the usage of teach-back during a patient-provider encounter.

A total of 88 patients and 11 providers participated in this study over the course of two semesters. A pre- and post-encounter questionnaire was provided to patients and a post-encounter questionnaire to providers. Data regarding teach-back instances during the encounter were obtained via transcripts of encounter audio recordings. Training was given to 17 providers between semesters, 11 of whom were participating in a larger study data collection, and pre- and post-training teach-back instances were compared. The data were coded and statistically analyzed.

The results were that there was a statistically significant relationship between health literacy and patient satisfaction as well as patient self-efficacy. Additionally, there was a significant relationship between teach-back and patient self-efficacy with an upward trend observed on the knowledge measures post-teach-back. Teach-back interventional training was also seen to have a statistically significant impact on provider use of teach-back during the patient encounter. Additional research in this field observing fidelity of teach-back practice and observing impacts of teach-back on a separate non-student population could be beneficial in improving patient encounters.

Thesis Completion




Thesis Chair

Miller, Ann


Zraick, Richard


Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)


Nicholson School of Communication and Media

Degree Program

Human Communication



Access Status

Open Access

Release Date


Restricted to the UCF community until 12-1-2020; it will then be open access.