Assessing professionalism: theory and practice

Parker, M. (2006) Assessing professionalism: theory and practice. Medical Teacher, 28 5: 399-403. doi:10.1080/01421590600625619

Author Parker, M.
Title Assessing professionalism: theory and practice
Journal name Medical Teacher   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0142-159X
Publication date 2006
Sub-type Editorial
DOI 10.1080/01421590600625619
Volume 28
Issue 5
Start page 399
End page 403
Total pages 5
Editor R. M. Harden
Place of publication Abingdon
Publisher Taylor & Francis Ltd
Collection year 2006
Language eng
Subject C1
330109 Assessment and Evaluation
750103 The professions and professionalisation
Abstract Professional attitudes and behaviours have only recently been explicitly recognized by medical educators as legitimate and necessary components of global competence, although the idea of Fitness to Practice has always presupposed acceptable professional behaviour. Medical schools have recently begun to introduce teaching and assessment of professionalism, including attitudes and behaviours. Partly as a result of the difficulty of assessment in this area, selection of students is receiving greater attention, in the pursuit of globally competent graduates. However, selection processes may be overrated for this purpose. Assessing actual attitudes and behaviour during the course is arguably a better way of ensuring that medical graduates are competent in these areas. I argue that judgments about attitudinal and behavioural competence are legitimate, and need be no more arbitrary than those made about scientific or clinical knowledge and skills, but also that these judgments should be restricted to what is agreed to be unacceptable behaviour, rather titan attempting to rate attitudes and behaviour positively. This model introduces students to the way in which their behaviours will be judged in their professional lives by registration authorities. These theoretical positions are illustrated by a recent case of academic failure based on inadequate attitudes and behaviours.
Keyword Education, Scientific Disciplines
Health Care Sciences & Services
Unprofessional Behavior
Q-Index Code C1

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Created: Wed, 15 Aug 2007, 08:26:40 EST