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TSMU scholar participated in Open Medical Institute seminar on Medical Education

On February 4 – 11, 2018, associate pediatrics professor of Ternopil State Medical University Natalia Haliiash took part in the seminar Medical Education, organized by the Open Medical Institute (OMI) with the financial support of the American Austrian Foundation (AAF) and Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economics of Austria.

The goal of OMI is to disseminate and implement the latest medical knowledge and practices among the medical community of Central and Eastern Europe. A number of professors and staff from our university have already had the opportunity to attend OMI medical workshops on a variety of topics. The most recent workshop is part of the OMI Health Leadership Seminars cycle, with the primary objective is provide education in public health and medical leadership, to improve the clinical education of OMI graduates and provide them with additional professional and leadership opportunities in their countries. The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) in the United States and the Association of Public Health Schools in the European Region offer academic guidance to these workshops.

The focus of the meeting was improvement of the methods of higher medical education. Instructors form CHOP, who have extensive experience in post-graduate medical training (such as residency and fellowships), have shared new approaches to adult learning. Most people are familiar with the basic principles of pedagogy, a science that studies the process of teaching children. However, adults learn differently: they already possess some knowledge, a certain number of skills and abilities, and have experience in their field. All this requires different approaches, which are studied by a distinct branch of science called “andragogy”.

Seminar participants and instructors

Andragogy is a theory of adult education, which stems from the fact modern education aims to promote the development and enrichment of a holistic person, allowing him or her to express their identity and realize their abilities. Andragogy brings together the findings about specifics of adult education, taking into account the age, educational and lifestyle needs, abilities, individual characteristics, experience, psyche and physiology. The science covers the content, forms, methods and means of organizing training for adults in order to facilitate their learning, to meet their educational needs, to increase the efficiency of training helping them to solve life problems, achieve personal goals and self-realization.

Professor Beth Rezet stressed that methods and approaches used to train physicians need to change, given the recent advances in medical science, increasing flow of information, and intensive use of technologies in medicine. The emphasis now shifts from the process and structure of teaching to the results and learning performance. Among the expected results are: moving the focus from teacher to student; prioritizing effects of the proposed learning activity, and not the activity itself; placing more attention to non-trivial aspects of learning, such as affective (values, attitudes) or meta-cognitive (critical thinking). Of course, all educational activities should be closely linked to professional competencies. ACGME (Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education) groups the general core competencies into the following categories: medical knowledge, patient care, interpersonal and communication skills, professionalism, practice-based learning and professional improvement, and system-based practice. Mastering competencies is a gradual and ongoing process. To integrate them into the educational process of competence, they are divided into components: sub-competencies and milestones, the stages that need to be mastered in the way of gaining competence. On the other hand, when linked together, the competencies form the Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs), a basis of physician’s professional activity.

During the workshop Dr. Haliiash gave a lecture “Non-technical skills in medicine: how to teach them better?” She has earned 34 DFP (Continuing Medical Education points of the Austrian Chamber of Physicians) and received a certificate for outstanding work.

Lecture “Non-technical skills in medicine: how to teach them better?”

Dr. Haliiash plans to use the information and skills obtained during the workshop to:

  • develop a workshop “Simulation study in medicine”;
  • improve teaching methodology for the classes Pediatrics and Patient Care in Pediatrics at the Center Of Simulation Training;
  • develop new areas international cooperation involving Ternopil State Medical University researchers;
  • improve research, teaching, methodology, and cultural and educational activities at TSMU.

Prof. Beth Rezet, USA, and prof. Wolfgang Aulitzky, Austria present the certificates.