IAMSE Fall 2019 WAS Session 3 Highlights

[The following notes were generated by Andrea Belovich, PhD.]

IAMSE Webinar Series, Fall 2019

Speaker: Bonny Dickinson, PhD and Maria Sheakley, PhD
Title: Congratulations! You’ve been promoted! Introducing the IAMSE Educator Toolkit
Series: Re-imagining Faculty Development in Health Professions Education

The third installment of the Fall 2019 IAMSE Web Seminar Series, “Re-imagining Faculty Development in Health Professions Education,” was presented on September 19, 2019 by Dr. Bonny Dickinson, Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Professor of the Department of Biomedical Sciences at Mercer University School of Medicine and Dr. Maria Sheakley, Professor of Physiology and Vice Chair of the Department of Biomedical Sciences at the Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine. In this webinar, “Congratulations! You’ve been promoted! Introducing the IAMSE Educator Toolkit,” Dr.’s Dickinson and Sheakley provided an overview of IAMSE resources available to medical educators who are looking to create and strengthen their educational portfolios for promotion and tenure applications.

The first portion of the presentation was given by Dr. Dickinson, who provided the background for the creation of the IAMSE Educator Toolkit. The Toolkit was developed by the Committee for the Advancement of Medical Science Educators (CAMSE), a subcommittee of the IAMSE Professional Development Committee. Instituted in 2015, CAMSE is charged with supporting the efforts of educators, facilitating communication about critical issues affecting medical education and educators, and examining the current state of institutional operationalization of guidelines for the recognition, reward, and promotion of educators. The work of CAMSE in developing the IAMSE Educator Toolkit, was, in part, a response to the widespread lack of knowledge surrounding the resources available to guide medical educator promotion and career development.

According to a 2017 IAMSE Member Survey (published in Medical Science Educator in 2018), faculty awareness of publications and guidelines meant to assist in promotion was modest and institutional adoption of such published guidelines for promotion was poor. In addition, the survey revealed that a majority of faculty are not aware of their own institution’s guidelines for promotion and tenure. These findings were identified as challenges to faculty promotion and tenure, in addition to several other major challenges identified in 2007, which faculty seeking promotion are still faced with today. These include lack of protected time for scholarship, lack of recognition for alternate forms of scholarship, differing perceptions of the relative value of educational contributions compared to others, lack of mentorship, lack of assistance in writing publications, and lack of understanding of how to publish or present educational work.

Dr. Dickinson concluded her portion of the webinar by summarizing the documentation that the IAMSE Educator Toolkit can provide to help faculty seeking promotion and tenure overcome the many challenges to advancement. he Toolkit helps educators develop portfolios beyond the curriculum vitae and the educational/teaching philosophy statement by framing (and documenting) their contributions in the five domains of educator activities: 1) Teaching, 2) Learner Assessment, 3) Advising and Mentoring, 4) Curriculum Development, and 5) Educational Leadership and Administration. Although not the focus of this webinar, Dr. Dickinson also mentioned that CAMSE has developed a companion toolkit, the Evaluator Toolkit, to provide guidance to those evaluating applications for promotion and tenure.

Dr. Maria Sheakley continued the webinar with a brief history of educational scholarship and the development of the Q2E model that gave rise to the IAMSE Educator Toolkit. In 1990, Boyer’s “Scholarship Reconsidered,” identified education as a true modality for promotion was advocated, efforts to promote the role of education as a true modality for promotion and scholarship became more widespread. In 2006, the AAMC GEA Consensus Conference on Educational Scholarship identified the five domains of educator activity (mentioned previously), which can be used to promote scholarship and excellence. Furthermore, to aid in illustrating the quality of these educational activities and relating them to scholarship, the Q2E (Quantity, Quality, and Engagement) model was designed to assess excellence and engagement for producing documentation for promotion. According to the Q2E model, “Excellence” can be assessed through both the quantity and the quality of the educational activities, and “Engagement” can be assessed through evidence of a Scholarly approach to activities (e.g., the work is informed by knowledge in the field) and through scholarship (e.g., contribution to the field’s knowledge through local, regional, national, and/or international dissemination).

CAMSE then used the Q2E model to frame development of the IAMSE Educator Toolkit. The Toolkit was designed to assess Quantity and Quality of educational activities by quantitifying information about the activity (e.g., number of leaners taught, how often, how much time devoted to the activity, etc.). Viewing Quantity/Quality together with Engagement on a continuum, these values are documented through evidence of an informed approach to the educational activity, activity outcomes, reflective critique of that activity, and finally through dissemination of the work (scholarship).

Dr. Sheakley then discussed the role of the IAMSE Educator Toolkit in developing an educator portfolio for promotion. In contrast to the CV, which lists all activities, the purpose of the educator portfolio is to document and showcase achievements that are representative of the educator’s work, highlighting the depth, breadth, impact and accomplishments of the work for presentation to a promotion and tenure committee. To aid educators in highlighting their achievements and developing their portfolios, the CAMSE created worksheets to apply to each of the five domains of educator activities (Teaching, Learner Assessment, Curriculum Development, Mentoring and Advising, and Educational Leadership and Administration).

Dr. Sheakley finished the webinar by encouraging educators to study their institution’s Promotion and Tenure guidelines and determine if a template already exists. The IAMSE Educator Toolkit can be used as a template to create a portfolio narrative if none is available, or it can be used to identify important elements of the CV to highlight. After choosing activities to highlight and determining where they fall along the Q2E-continuum, educators can fill out the toolkit worksheets to create portfolios and narratives that encompass the quality, quantity, excellence, engagement, and scholarship of educator achievements.

The IAMSE Educator Toolkit and its companion, the IAMSE Evaluator Toolkit, will be available as free resources from the IAMSE website.