Education

“One hundred and eighty-five”. That was the answer to my question. The question, that I’d posed somewhat naively to our intrepid assessment coordinator, Amanda Consack, was “how many assessments have the 2015 class undertaken during medical school?” “Do you mean everything?” she asked. “Yes. Everything”, I answered, not wanting to sound wimpy. In her typical fashion, Amanda provided me not … Continue reading

I just received a posting from Faculty Focus with the engaging title:  Why can’t students just pay attention?  Dr. Chris Hakala, the author, gives a really good overview of the dilemma many of us face when teaching:  students are not engaged, are multi-tasking at best, and distracted at worst, and are not learning or retaining key concepts.  How much responsibility … Continue reading

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The first accreditation visit to the Queen’s School of Medicine occurred in October of 1909, and didn’t go particularly well. The reviewer was Abraham Flexner, a rather determined iconoclast and career educator who had been commissioned by the Carnegie Foundation to carry out a review of all North American medical schools. Flexner undertook his charge with a shrewd earnestness that … Continue reading

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We often spend a lot of time planning our classes, especially our case-based small group learning (SGL) sessions. We tailor our sessional learning objectives to the course objectives that have been assigned, selected solid preparatory materials, build great cases and craft meaningful questions for groups to work through. This makes sense, as the small group learning (SGL) format used in … Continue reading

Are physicians “leaders”? Put another way, is “leadership” a necessary or even desirable attribute of the aspiring or practicing medical doctor? The recent revision of the competency framework of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, and specifically the proposal to change the “Manager” competency to “Leader” has sparked some interesting conversation on this issue. The root of this controversy … Continue reading

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For medical students in Canada, there are three days in the course of their career that stand out above all others: the day they receive their letter of acceptance to medical school; convocation (when they officially become graduate physicians); and Match Day. The most emotionally charged by far, is Match Day. For those of you not familiar, Match Day is … Continue reading

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Medical Grand Rounds are a longstanding (dare I say, traditional) feature of the academic medical centre.  In fact, their durability and continuing appeal might be considered somewhat perplexing in an age of increasing, almost frantic, busy-ness, and easy access to medical information and prepared presentations ready for review at our convenience.  Here at Queen’s, they have become rejuvenated and are … Continue reading

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Critics only make you stronger. You have to look at what they are saying as feedback. Sometimes the feedback helps, and other times, it’s just noise that can be a distraction. Robert Kiyosaki   Separating the useful feedback from the noise in students’ comments on faculty evaluation questionnaires is an annual challenge for all university instructors– not just at Queen’s … Continue reading

Welcome to 2015!  I have a few resolutions for my teaching I’d like to share with you from some reading over the holiday.  Feel free to add yours too!  Resolution  1:  Be learner-centred. I’ve written about this before, but translating learner-centred theory into practical advice is very helpful. Education happens in the brain, and giving learners the opportunity to use … Continue reading

For a teenage boy growing up in a small town, the local auto mechanic can become a best friend and key to social success. I had great admiration for one in particular who would let me watch and explain what he was doing as he went about trying to resuscitate whatever antiquated pile of spare parts I was currently passing … Continue reading

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What’s the price of professional autonomy?
Are we willing to pay it?
Published Mon, May 25, 2015

We all need people in our lives who are willing to tell us “how it is”. These are special folks, often spouses, relatives or lifelong friends, whose relationship with us is strong enough to allow candid, honest, unvarnished commentary about topics close to the heart. I found myself in a conversation with one such person recently who had the temerity … Continue reading

When you are yourself, I’m free to be myself
Published Mon, May 18, 2015

“When you are yourself, I’m free to be myself” The Reverend Bill Hendry spoke these words as a “first patient” at the First Patient Program’s 3rd annual Grand Finale on Wed. May 13. He was addressing the 100 students of the class of 2017 who had completed their 18 plus months of relationship with their first patient, whom they’d met … Continue reading

Milestones: A tribute to our tenacious 2015 graduating class.
Published Mon, May 11, 2015

“One hundred and eighty-five”. That was the answer to my question. The question, that I’d posed somewhat naively to our intrepid assessment coordinator, Amanda Consack, was “how many assessments have the 2015 class undertaken during medical school?” “Do you mean everything?” she asked. “Yes. Everything”, I answered, not wanting to sound wimpy. In her typical fashion, Amanda provided me not … Continue reading

Student attention in class: Whose responsibility?
Published Mon, May 4, 2015

I just received a posting from Faculty Focus with the engaging title:  Why can’t students just pay attention?  Dr. Chris Hakala, the author, gives a really good overview of the dilemma many of us face when teaching:  students are not engaged, are multi-tasking at best, and distracted at worst, and are not learning or retaining key concepts.  How much responsibility … Continue reading

Queen’s student wins 2015 Sandra Banner Award for Leadership
Published Tue, April 28, 2015

Queen’s Class of 2015 student Eve Purdy received the CaRMS Sandra Banner Award for Student Leadership at the CaRMS forum held in conjunction with the Canadian Conference on Medical Education (CCME) in Vancouver on April 26. Richard Reznick, Dean of the Queen’s Faculty of Health Sciences, presented the award on behalf of the award selection committee. “Eve has always challenged … Continue reading