Health professional education programs: How the teacher develops

Sense Publishers
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Educating Health Professionals: Becoming a University Teacher, 2013, pp. 49 - 60
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Health professionals who teach may be salaried health sector employees who are directly engaged by a higher education institution in adjunct or conjoint academic appointments. Many teaching health professionals also provide learning activities through good will and altruism. Another group consists of academics with health professional degrees for whom academia is the primary employment; these professionals may engage in professional clinical practice in only a limited capacity. Many assume that practising health professionals will be adequate educators: that as clinical (content or discipline) experts, they should naturally also be competent teachers. We know, however, that there may be little correlation between clinical proficiency, seniority and teaching excellence. Thus there is a need for health professional educators to be provided with the opportunities to develop skills in educating. The provision of teaching development in this area has expanded over the last few decades. Many universities now offer degree programs such as certificates and masters level degrees so that health professionals can gain formal education qualifications, thus legitimising their teaching in a professional context.
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