The surgeon as educator: fundamentals of faculty training in surgical specialties

Authors

  • Nuzhath Khan,

    1. Medical Research Council Centre for Transplantation, King's College London, King's Health Partners, Department of Urology, Guy's Hospital, London, UK
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  • Mohammed S. Khan,

    1. Medical Research Council Centre for Transplantation, King's College London, King's Health Partners, Department of Urology, Guy's Hospital, London, UK
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  • Prokar Dasgupta,

    1. Medical Research Council Centre for Transplantation, King's College London, King's Health Partners, Department of Urology, Guy's Hospital, London, UK
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  • Kamran Ahmed

    Corresponding author
    • Medical Research Council Centre for Transplantation, King's College London, King's Health Partners, Department of Urology, Guy's Hospital, London, UK
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Correspondence: Kamran Ahmed, Department of Urology, Guy's Hospital, St Thomas Street, London SE1 9RT, UK.

e-mail: k.ahmed@imperial.ac.uk

Abstract

What's known on the subject? and What does the study add?

  • It has long been acknowledged that clinical expertise alone may not equip a surgeon to become a successful educator, and that medical educators may require additional teacher training to be able to teach effectively. To this end, many different faculty development training courses have arisen over the years including workshops, seminar series, longitudinal programmes, and fellowships. However, there is a lack of research into the effectiveness of these training programmes on long-term sustainable changes in teaching and learning, especially in the field of surgical education.
  • This article discusses the importance of faculty training within surgery and evaluates the existing faculty development programmes in terms of long- and short-term outcomes. Recommendations are provided that highlight the need for additional teacher training opportunities in surgery, the vigorous evaluation of the methodology and long-term outcomes of existing training programmes, and the need for better recognition and reward for teaching excellence within organisations.

Objective

  • To explore faculty training in the field of surgical specialities with a focus on the educational aspect of faculty training. Teaching is an important commitment for academic surgeons alongside duties of patient care, research and continuing professional development. Educating surgical faculty in the skills of teaching is becoming increasingly important and the realisation that clinical expertise does not necessarily translate to teaching expertise has led to the notion that faculty members require formal training in teaching methods and educational theory to teach effectively. The aim of faculty training or development is to increase knowledge and skills in teaching, research and administration of faculty members.

Materials and Methods

  • A range of resources, e.g. journal articles, books and online literature was reviewed to investigate faculty development programmes in surgery.
  • Various issues were addressed, e.g. the need for faculty development, evaluating the various types of training programmes and their outcomes, and exploring barriers to faculty training.
  • Recommendations were provided based on the findings.

Results

  • There is increased recognition that faculty members require basic training in educational theory and teaching skills to teach effectively.
  • Most faculty training programmes are workshops and short courses, which use participant satisfaction as an outcome measure. However, there is growing consensus that longer term interventions, e.g. seminar series, longitudinal programmes and fellowships, produce more sustainable change in learning, behaviour and organisational culture.
  • Barriers to faculty development include lack of protected time, reward and recognition for teaching.

Conclusion

  • Recommendations are made including better documentation of faculty training interventions within surgery, further investigation into the effectiveness of long- vs short-term interventions, improved methodology, and increased recognition and reward for educational accomplishments.

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