Mastering the Skills of the Modern Medical Educator (Optional Add-On)


Friday, April 26 • 1:00 - 5:00 pm

This program delves more deeply into the educator’s skills development as a teacher, a content creator, and an institutional leader. Choose among the following four focused tracks to tailor your education to your current and future professional needs:

Track 1: Successful Career Development for the Clinician-Educator

Through a series of highly-interactive workshops, you will explore the skills educators need to climb your institution’s promotion ladder and succeed in a career in academic medicine. You will learn strategies for: navigating a successful career path, spearheading educational innovations, becoming an educational change agent, managing your time to stay clinically and academically productive, and turning your work into peer-reviewed scholarship.

Academic Career Advancement: Climbing the Medical Education Ladder and Navigating the Maze

Navigating your institution’s academic promotion pathways and meeting all necessary promotion requirements can be challenging. This workshop will provide practical guidance for accelerating your climb up your institution’s medical education hierarchy or landing a coveted leadership position. 

You will gain ideas and guidance on how to:

  • Attain greater visibility for your work
  • Establish your educational niche
  • Identify teaching roles that are personally rewarding and meaningful to your career advancement
  • Determine local, national, and international venues to share your work and achieve greater recognition
  • Energize others to collaborate with you
  • Discover what’s needed to secure a promotion or targeted leadership position

Enhanced Efficiency and Productivity through Better Time Management

Striking a balance between clinical and medical education demands is difficult, but there are ways to remain highly productive in both roles. This portion of the program offers productivity tips that can immediately serve you well throughout your professional career. 

Ideas and education presented here include strategies, productivity tools, tips and techniques to:

  • Enhance professional productivity
  • Reduce distraction and procrastination
  • Decide when to say “Yes” and how to say “No” without compromising your career
  • Find the right mentor
  • Get to email “zero”
  • Leverage technology and apps for significant productivity improvements
  • Achieve better work-life balance
  • Improve professional job satisfaction

Peer Observation: Going Beyond Student Evaluation of Teaching

This segment of the program provides a rare opportunity to experience and receive new peer-observation tools and resources now being rolled out at Harvard Medical School for improved teaching effectiveness. These tools include:

  • Validated instruments to assess the quality of a lecture 
  • Detailed behavioral descriptors of effective teaching techniques
  • Detailed faculty-to-faculty peer observation worksheets

In addition to these tools, you will:

  • Learn how peer observation is a core component of individualized faculty development
  • Receive guidance to establish a peer observation program within your own institution
  • Take home recommendations on how to provide respectful, practical feedback to your faculty to improve their teaching skills and increase morale 

Helping You Help Yourself: Advocating and Negotiating

Many careers in medical education do not follow a straight path and there are innumerable opportunities, challenges, branch points and discussions where you will be faced with difficult decisions. Making good decisions that enable you to rise up through the academic ranks and maintain your ability to do what you love often requires the ability to advocate for oneself and negotiate successfully. This session will provide you with strategies and approaches to:

  • Recognize your strengths and identify areas for improvement
  • Understand how to advocate for yourself and what you need to succeed
  • Overcome typical roadblocks that may prevent advancement
  • Identify successful techniques for negotiating successful outcomes

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Track 2: Taking Your Teaching to the Next Level ♦ 

This special three-part program examines the new challenges and requirements for medical educators and provides strategies and up-to-date techniques to address them in order to improve your teaching effectiveness in the classroom and at the bedside. 

Concept Mapping: Creating Windows into the Learner's Thinking and Reasoning

Studies of medical errors show that roughly half of the mistakes made in clinical care have a cognitive component —a mistake in thinking. Given the explosion in medical knowledge in recent years along with an increased emphasis on quality and safety, medical educators have an ever greater obligation to ensure that learners have strong clinical reasoning skills. The question is how to effectively teach critical thinking. Much of what we do as practicing clinicians is intuitive; not so for students who struggle to put a case together. This portion of the program provides strategies and best practices to teach clinical reasoning that is less susceptible to cognitive biases and helps your students to avoid many of the most common thinking mistakes that plague medicine and result in medical malpractice.

  • New perspectives gained through this program will not only help you to improve the performance of your students but also help you to advance your own clinical reasoning.

Art of Debriefing: Exploring Motivations of Learner Behavior

Debriefing is a collaborative discussion between learner and educator following a clinical or simulated encounter. High-impact debriefings focus on guided self-reflection with the intention of exploring thought processes that drive observed behaviors. Engaging with learners in this manner has been shown to result in deep learning and improved clinical performance. Given the growth of simulation-based education modalities and the increasing patient complexity and acuity represented in our practices, clinician educators must be facile in techniques that probe for understanding to facilitate transfer of experiential learning to high-risk clinical practice. This portion of the program reviews the basics of effective debriefing and explores strategies to employ these techniques in clinical teaching, communication encounters, and simulation, with all levels of learners.

Procedural Teaching and Assessment: Moving Beyond “See One, Do One, Teach One”

It is no longer acceptable for learners to acquire procedural skills by trial and error. Regulatory bodies and academic medical centers are requiring greater supervision of procedures. What makes for “good” supervision? What are the keys to teaching procedural skills, both at the bedside and in a simulated environment, in a way that protects the patient and provides for graduated autonomy on the part of the learner? This portion of the program answers these questions and provides a roadmap to help you develop (or refine) your approach to procedural skill training, ensuring it is aligned with these imperatives and optimizes outcomes for your students.

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♦ Track 3: Medical Education Scholarship: From Creating a Curriculum to Publishing Your Work ♦ 

As educators, we are always creating, implementing and evaluating new curricula and novel ways to teach. Creation and assessment of curricula and teaching methods, and assessment of students, must be done in a rigorous way. This can seem daunting, especially for those who have not had formal training. This track is intended for those who are conducting scholarly work or aspire to do so. Participants will learn the skills of curriculum development, basics of survey design and analysis, skills for running your own focus group and the importance of this qualitative methodology, and tips and tricks to take your scholarship to the next level by getting publications and recognition.

Components of this unique and highly engaging track include the following sessions:

Curriculum Design and Development

Utilizing Kern’s six step approach, learners will be taught how to create and implement a new curriculum. This interactive session will highlight the utility of a needs assessment; demonstrate the importance of clear and actionable learning objectives, and discuss various methods for assessment of the learner and evaluation of the curriculum.  Strategies to approach challenges with curriculum development will be explored and learners will leave with tangible skills they can immediately utilize.

Do You Strongly Agree?: Tips and Tricks to Improve Your Survey Design

Surveys are important tools not only for needs assessments, but also for testing, assessing, and evaluating. Receiving high-quality data from a survey is wholly dependent on the questions that are asked. This interactive session will review best practices for survey design and style through creation of survey questions, critique of questions and review of evidence for best practices in survey design. This session will provide participants with techniques to:

  • Design the “perfect” survey question
  • Choose the appropriate response options by understanding the pros and cons of open- and closed-ended questions, anchors, Likert scales
  • Create surveys that will improve your chances of getting responses by learning tricks of using color and design elements such as back buttons, skip patterns and forced choices

Running Your Own Focus Group: An Immersion Experience

Focus groups are an important aspect of qualitative research. In this highly interactive and engaging session, participants will learn the necessary steps of running a focus group by participating in a focus group themselves. This is the ultimate learning-by-doing experience. After this session, participants will have the ability to run their own focus groups by learning the following skills:

  • Deciding when to utilize a focus group vs an interview
  • Choosing the right number of participants for a group
  • Creating a focus group guide; asking the right questions and the right number of questions
  • Facilitating a focus group and learning how to manage challenging participants
  • Understanding the first steps in qualitative analysis

Scholarship and Recognition: Maximizing the Impact of Your Work

Getting published and adding to the medical education literature is a vital part of academic career advancement; however, it can be difficult to “get your work out there” to demonstrate the impact of your teaching on students or patient care. This workshop will provide proven strategies and practical tips for you to:

  • Develop short-term, achievable goals for disseminating your work and ideas
  • Transform your teaching activities (e.g., curricula, assessment tools, novel teaching methods, innovations in medical education) into scholarship
  • Effectively present and package your ideas 
  • Accelerate your time-to-publication
  • Reduce the chances of rejection
  • Succeed with other forms of recognition for your work

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♦ Track 4: Harnessing the Humanities in Medical Education ♦ 

Join us for an innovative workshop to explore varied methods of using the humanities in your teaching. This unique opportunity will allow participants to experience several different approaches to using the arts and literature, discuss the methods utilized, and explore "applying" these to your learners. Taught by an experienced medical educator with a graduate degree in art history, as well as years of experience facilitating "Literature and Medicine" seminars at Boston hospitals, this workshop will provide you with a personal immersion experience of using the arts and will leave you with tangible skills to teach medical humanities to learners of all levels.

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Friday/Saturday Add-On Bundle Discount

Sign up for any of the above Friday Add-Ons along with the Saturday Half-Day Add-On, and receive a $100 discount. Learn more about the Saturday Add-On, "Incorporating Technology into Your Teaching."