Send to

Choose Destination
Adv Med Educ Pract. 2017 Dec 27;9:7-15. doi: 10.2147/AMEP.S146384. eCollection 2018.

The journey from clinician to undergraduate medical educator involves four patterns of transformation.

Author information

Obstetric Anesthesia Division, Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta University, Augusta, GA, USA.
Surgery Department, Clinica de los Andes, Tunja, Colombia.



Traditionally, teaching is part of a clinician's job. Some practitioners recognize the teaching activity as rewarding. This study explored the ways clinical practitioners experience their journey from clinicians to medical teachers, analyzing their prior experiences of teaching and learning, conceptions of good teaching and learning, perceptions of learning environments, and finally, how those factors influence their approaches to teaching.


Data for phenomenographic analysis were collected through semi-structured interviews conducted in Spanish and administered to twelve clinical teachers in three medical schools in Colombia.


Through sequential phases of analysis, we constructed a conceptual diagram to identify critical concepts, themes, and categories that describe patterns that clinicians adopt during their journey to become medical teachers. We identified two themes and four patterns that describe the journey from practitioner to medical teacher: the identity theme, referring to "what" practitioners showed as the object of the journey and the changing process theme referring to "how" participants adopt changes during the journey. We describe four patterns that describe the journey that physicians adopt when exposed to the experience of clinical teaching.


It is possible to identify two themes and to devise at least four patterns in ways of experiencing the journey to medical teacher. These patterns are not a fixed set of characteristics, but rather a spectrum of experiences. Taking into consideration the professional identity of clinical teachers and the path of their teaching process change, it might be possible to devise better strategies for teaching development activities.


medical education; medical teacher; teaching experience

Conflict of interest statement

Disclosure The authors report no conflicts of interest in this work.

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Dove Medical Press Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center