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Concept: Experiential learning


The authors describe the first 11 academic years (2005-2006 through 2016-2017) of a longitudinal, small-group faculty development program for strengthening humanistic teaching and role modeling at 30 U.S. and Canadian medical schools that continues today. During the yearlong program, small groups of participating faculty met twice monthly with a local facilitator for exercises in humanistic teaching, role modeling, and related topics that combined narrative reflection with skills training using experiential learning techniques. The program focused on the professional development of its participants. Thirty schools participated; 993 faculty, including some residents, completed the program.In evaluations, participating faculty at 13 of the schools scored significantly more positively as rated by learners on all dimensions of medical humanism than did matched controls. Qualitative analyses from several cohorts suggest many participants had progressed to more advanced stages of professional identity formation after completing the program. Strong engagement and attendance by faculty participants as well as the multimodal evaluation suggest that the program may serve as a model for others. Recently, most schools adopting the program have offered the curriculum annually to two or more groups of faculty participants to create sufficient numbers of trained faculty to positively influence humanistic teaching at the institution.The authors discuss the program’s learning theory, outline its curriculum, reflect on the program’s accomplishments and plans for the future, and state how faculty trained in such programs could lead institutional initiatives and foster positive change in humanistic professional development at all levels of medical education.This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives License 4.0 (CCBY-NC-ND), where it is permissible to download and share the work provided it is properly cited. The work cannot be changed in any way or used commercially without permission from the journal.

Concepts: Education, Management, Learning, Developmental psychology, College, Teacher, Creative Commons, Experiential learning


Despite the rising incidence of melanoma, medical students have progressively fewer opportunities to encounter patients with this important condition. Curricula tend to attach the greatest value to intellectual forms of learning. Compared to intellectual learning, however, experiential learning affords students deep insights about a condition. Doctors who experience ill health are more empathic towards patients. However opportunities to learn about cancer experientially are limited. Temporary transfer tattoos can simulate the ill health associated with melanoma. We reasoned that, if doctors who have been sick are more empathic, temporarily ‘having’ melanoma might have a similar effect.

Concepts: Medicine, Health, Epidemiology, Education, Physician, Illness, Knowledge, Experiential learning


To understand students' and tutors' perceptions of the development of clinical competencies for the delivery of comprehensive medication management services in an experiential learning project linked to a Brazilian school of pharmacy.

Concepts: Psychology, Pharmacology, Education, Learning, Developmental psychology, The Delivery, Experiential learning, Experiential education


Medical education can play important role in cultivating the willingness among the medical students to work in underprivileged areas after their graduation. Experiential learning through early exposure to primary health care centers could help students better understand the opportunities and challenges of such settings. However, the information on the real experiences and reflections of medical students on the rural primary health care settings from low-income countries like Nepal are still limited. The aim of this study is to demonstrate the learning process of the medical students through their reflective writings based on Kolb’s theory of experiential learning.

Concepts: Health care, Medicine, Education, Learning, Knowledge, Health science, Play, Experiential learning


Context  Intersecting social determinants of health constrain access to care and treatment adherence among homeless populations. Because clinicians seldom receive training in the social determinants of health, they may be unprepared to account for or address these factors when developing treatment strategies for homeless individuals. Objectives  This study explored: (i) clinicians' preparedness to provide care responsive to the social determinants of health in homeless populations, and (ii) the steps taken by clinicians to overcome shortcomings in their clinical training in regard to the social determinants of health. Methods  Qualitative interviews were conducted with doctors (n = 6) and nurses (n = 18) in six Canadian cities. Participants had at least 2 years of experience in providing care to homeless populations. Interview transcripts were analysed using methods of constant comparison. Results  Participants highlighted how, when first providing care to this population, they were unprepared to account for or address social determinants shaping the health of homeless persons. However, participants recognised the necessity of addressing these factors to situate care within the social and structural contexts of homelessness. Participants' accounts illustrated that experiential learning was critical to increasing capacity to provide care responsive to the social determinants of health. Experiential learning was a continuous process that involved: (i) engaging with homeless persons in multiple settings and contexts to inform treatment strategies; (ii) evaluating the efficacy of treatment strategies through continued observation and critical reflection, and (iii) adjusting clinical practice to reflect observations and new knowledge. Conclusions  This study underscores the need for greater emphasis on the social determinants of health in medical education in the context of homelessness. These insights may help to inform the development and design of service-learning initiatives that integrate understandings of the social determinants of health, and thus potentially improve the readiness of clinicians to address the complex factors that shape the health of homeless populations.

Concepts: Health care, Clinical trial, Demography, Sociology, Knowledge, Homelessness, Homelessness in the United States, Experiential learning


Approaches to classroom instruction have evolved considerably over the past 50 years. This progress has been spurred by the development of several learning principles and methods of instruction, including active learning, student-centered learning, collaborative learning, experiential learning, and problem-based learning. In the present paper, we suggest that these seemingly different strategies share important underlying characteristics and can be viewed as complimentary components of a broader approach to classroom instruction called transformational teaching. Transformational teaching involves creating dynamic relationships between teachers, students, and a shared body of knowledge to promote student learning and personal growth. From this perspective, instructors are intellectual coaches who create teams of students who collaborate with each other and with their teacher to master bodies of information. Teachers assume the traditional role of facilitating students' acquisition of key course concepts, but do so while enhancing students' personal development and attitudes toward learning. They accomplish these goals by establishing a shared vision for a course, providing modeling and mastery experiences, challenging and encouraging students, personalizing attention and feedback, creating experiential lessons that transcend the boundaries of the classroom, and promoting ample opportunities for preflection and reflection. We propose that these methods are synergistically related and, when used together, maximize students' potential for intellectual and personal growth.

Concepts: Psychology, Education, Educational psychology, Knowledge, Teacher, Pedagogy, Experiential learning, Experiential education


We describe an interprofessional educator development program, designed intentionally, that was implemented at an academic healthcare centre. In 2014, we purposefully adapted our pre-existing educator development program to be able to include all interprofessional educators at our institution. The program’s goals were to enhance educator skills, a common need due to requirements of accreditation, and to create a local interprofessional community of teachers. The framework of the program was based upon adult learning principles, reflective practice, experiential learning and peer groups, all key characteristics of faculty development programs. It was also longitudinal and immersive. Kirkpatrick’s program evaluation model was used for identifying results; participants' self-reported evaluation forms were collected and their narrative comments were analyzed.

Concepts: Evaluation, Education, Learning, Program, Programming language, Peer group, Teacher, Experiential learning


It is imperative to incorporate education on interprofessional competencies into the curriculum of healthcare provider students in order to meet the individual program accreditation standards. However, what is missing is a theoretical foundation for the education. The purpose of this paper was to examine if the qualitative data from a mixed-methods study using low-fidelity simulation of a case study that demonstrated changes in interprofessional attitudes and behaviors in healthcare provider students aligned with Kolb’s Experiential Learning Theory (ELT). First-year students (n=515) from 8 professional healthcare programs participated in the 90-minute study which included a scripted scenario of the patient care rounding process. Using thematic analysis, the qualitative results demonstrated a significant alignment with the four stages of Kolb’s ELT. Based on the results of this study, ELT appears to provide a solid theoretical underpinning for the education through which to teach interprofessional competencies to healthcare provider students.

Concepts: Health care, Health care provider, Scientific method, Patient, Education, Learning, Experiential learning, Education theory


Assessment of interprofessional education (IPE) frequently focuses on students' learning outcomes including changes in knowledge, skills, and/or attitudes. While a foundational education in the values and information of their chosen profession is critical, interprofessional learning follows a continuum from formal education to practice. The continuum increases in significance and complexity as learning becomes more relationship based and dependent upon the ability to navigate complex interactions with patients, families, communities, co-workers, and others. Integrating IPE into collaborative practice is critical to enhancing students' experiential learning, developing teamwork competencies, and understanding the complexity of teams. This article describes a project that linked students with a hospital-based quality-improvement effort to focus on the acquisition and practice of teamwork skills and to determine the impact of teamwork on patient and quality outcome measures. A hospital unit was identified with an opportunity for improvement related to quality care, patient satisfaction, employee engagement, and team behaviours. One hundred and thirty-seven students from six health profession colleges at the Medical University of South Carolina underwent TeamSTEPPS® training and demonstrated proficiency of their teamwork-rating skills with the TeamSTEPPS® Team Performance Observation Tool (T-TPO). Students observed real-time team behaviours of unit staff before and after staff attended formal TeamSTEPPS® training. The students collected a total of 778 observations using the T-TPO. Teamwork performance on the unit improved significantly across all T-TPO domains (team structure, communication, leadership, situation monitoring, and mutual support). Significant improvement in each domain continued post-intervention and at 15-month follow-up, improvement remained significant compared to baseline. Student engagement in TeamSTEPPS® training and demonstration of their reliability as teamwork-observers was a valuable learning experience and also yielded an opportunity to gather unique, and otherwise difficult to attain, data from a hospital unit for use by quality managers and administrators.

Concepts: Psychology, Education, Educational psychology, Skill, Learning, Knowledge, Student, Experiential learning


Bronchoscopy programs implementing the experiential learning model address different learning styles. Problem-based learning improves knowledge retention, critical decision making, and communication. These modalities are preferred by learners and contribute to their engagement, in turn leading to durable learning. Follow-up after live events is warranted through spaced education strategies. The objectives of this article are to (1) summarize and illustrate the implementation of experiential learning theory for bronchoscopy courses, (2) discuss the flipped classroom model and problem-based learning, (3) illustrate bronchoscopy checklists implementation in simulation, and (4) discuss the importance of feedback and spaced learning for bronchoscopy education programs.

Concepts: Decision making, Education, Educational psychology, Learning, Logic, Experiential learning, Education theory, Learning styles