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Teach Learn Med. 2013;25 Suppl 1:S57-61. doi: 10.1080/10401334.2013.842913.

Future focus for professional development.

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a Department of Medical Education , Southern Illinois University School of Medicine , Springfield, Illinois , USA.


Professional development has evolved from individually focused sabbaticals and professional leaves to institutionally focused programs with an interest in developing faculty members' ability to teach in various environments as well as to succeed in the many endeavors they undertake. We address various issues related to professional development in the medical school arena. Professional development in medical school takes place in a context where faculty are stretched to engage in research and service not only for their own sake but also to financially support their institutions. This obligates professional developers to acknowledge and address the environments in which teaching faculty work, and to use approaches to professional development that honor the time and efforts of teaching faculty. These approaches may be brief interventions that make use of principles of education, and may include online offerings. Professional development will be most effective when professional developers acknowledge that most faculty members aspire to excellence in teaching, but they do so in an environment that pushes them to address competing concerns. Offering professional development opportunities that fit within the workplace environment, take little time, and build upon faculty's existing knowledge will assist in enhancing faculty success.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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