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Adv Exp Med Biol. 2017;989:217-233. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-57348-9_19.

Programmatic Assessment of Professionalism in Psychiatry Education: A Literature Review and Implementation Guide.

Plakiotis C1,2,3,4.

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Monash Ageing Research Centre (MONARC), Monash University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Department of Psychiatry, School of Clinical Sciences at Monash Health, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Aged Persons Mental Health Service, Monash Health, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Aged Psychiatry Academic Unit (Monash University), c/o Medical Administration, Kingston Centre, Warrigal Road, Cheltenham, VIC, 3192, Australia.


Programmatic assessment is being adopted as a preferred method of assessment in postgraduate medical education in Australia. Programmatic assessment of professionalism is likely to receive increasing attention. This paper reviews the literature regarding the assessment of professionalism in psychiatry. A search using the terms 'professionalism AND psychiatry' was conducted in the ERIC database. Only original articles relevant to professionalism education and assessment in psychiatry were selected, rather than theoretical or review papers that applied research from other fields of medicine to psychiatry. Articles regarding the need for professionalism education in psychiatry were included as they provided a rationale for curriculum development in this field as a precursor to assessment. Key findings from the literature were summarised in light of the author's own experience as an educator and assessor of both medical students and trainees in psychiatry, and incorporated into a guide to implementing programmatic assessment of professionalism in psychiatry. Within psychiatry, the specific evidence base for use of particular tools in assessing professionalism is limited. However, used in conjunction with psychiatrists' views about what is important in professionalism education, as well as knowledge from other medical disciplines regarding professionalism assessment tools, this evidence can inform implementation of programmatic assessment of professionalism in undergraduate, postgraduate and continuing professional development settings. Given the emergent nature of such assessment initiatives, they should be subjected to rigorous evaluation.


Competency-based assessment; Medical education; Professionalism; Programmatic assessment; Psychiatry education

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