Publication
Title
Exploring deliberate practice in medicine : how do internists learn at work
Author
Abstract
Medical professionals need to keep on learning as part of their everyday work to deliver high-quality health care. Although the importance of physicians learning is widely recognized, few studies have investigated how they learn in the workplace. Based on insights from deliberate practice research, this study examined the activities physicians engage in during their work that might further their professional development. As deliberate practice requires a focused effort to improve performance, the study also examined the goals underlying this behaviour. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 50 internal medicine physicians: 19 residents, 18 internists working at a university hospital, and 13 working at a non-university hospital. The results showed that learning in medical practice was very much embedded in clinical work. Most relevant learning activities were directly related to patient care rather than motivated by competence improvement goals. Advice and feedback were sought when necessary to provide this care. Performance standards were tied to patients conditions. The patients encountered and the discussions with colleagues about patients were valued most for professional development, while teaching and updating activities were also valued in this respect. In conclusion, physicians learning is largely guided by practical experience rather than deliberately sought. When professionals interact in diagnosing and treating patients to achieve high-quality care, their experiences contribute to expertise development. However, much could be gained from managing learning opportunities more explicitly. We offer suggestions for increasing the focus on learning in medical practice and further research.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Advances in health sciences education
Publication
2011
ISSN
1382-4996
Volume/pages
16:1(2011), p. 81-95
ISI
000289432100008
Full text (Publishers DOI)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identification
Creation 27.04.2011
Last edited 26.05.2017
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