Effective and enthusiastic rural preceptors. What they need to know and what they need to have. An integrated approach to the support and training of rural clinicians who teach medical students on placement

Woolley, Torres, Sen Gupta, Tarun, and Thistlethwaite, Jill (2005) Effective and enthusiastic rural preceptors. What they need to know and what they need to have. An integrated approach to the support and training of rural clinicians who teach medical students on placement. Report. Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing, Canberra, ACT, Australia.

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Abstract

[Extract] Aims: This project explored the learning and support needs of rural preceptors of undergraduate medical students from the James Cook University School of Medicine, including rural clinicians, General Practitioners and allied health professionals, to identify the preferred options for delivery and feedback, and to develop an integrated and self-sustaining approach. Recommendations are made to improve quality locally, which should be of relevance to other settings.

Methodology: The program was evaluated using both qualitative and quantitative means. The primary methodology was qualitative, reflecting the need to evaluate perceptions of the preceptors regarding their preparation, support and reward needs, the perceptions of both the preceptor and students regarding the teaching/learning environment on rural placements, and identifies how these needs may be more appropriately delivered in future years.

Conclusions and key recommendations: Both qualitative and quantitative components of the needs analysis strongly indicated that despite not receiving formal preparation for their teaching responsibilities, the great majority of rural preceptors provided students with a positive teaching/learning environment on rural placements. Preceptors made many suggestions regarding their preparation, support and reward needs, and how these could be most appropriately delivered. The most important of these included: 1. Student feedback of the preceptor's teaching strategies is highly desired by preceptors. However, because of their time constraints, preceptors wanted education and training to be organized only if the student feedback showed it was required, and the associated education and training must be delivered appropriate to the preceptor's preferences. Student feedback should be undertaken every few years, and summarized results delivered at yearly conferences and/or by personal communication if specific teaching issues identified.2. Students should bring information to the rural preceptor about their personal interests and Faculty expectations, current and previous curriculum/organ systems under investigation, aims/learning objectives of rural placement, and desired practical learning activities. 3. Faculty should ensure students who are sent out to rural placement sites have sufficient training in common clinical procedures, necessary equipment, enthusiasm, and good understanding of the personal behaviours and cultural and confidentiality issues that are expected and appropriate in rural and remote areas. 4. Teaching/learning experiences are significantly enhanced if specific resources are available at the rural teaching facilities, including: spare rooms at the rural placement site where students can be given tutorials and examine patients by themselves; access to approved medical education websites and textbooks; and Faculty-appointed administration staff in the rural site to organize and deliver varied learning activities.5. Rural preceptors are not only very different individually, but they also work in very different medical facilities and live in very different rural communities; therefore, Faculty should liaise closely with each individual preceptor to determine and deliver the student feedback, preparation, support and rewards desired by each, and listen to and act on their concerns and suggestions.

Item ID: 35355
Item Type: Report (Report)
Funders: Department of Health and Ageing, Australian Government, Rural Undergraduate Support and Co-ordination Program
Date Deposited: 21 Feb 2017 23:20
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920506 Rural Health @ 100%
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