An exploration of perceptions of tutor evaluation in problem-based learning tutorials

Papinczak, T (2010) An exploration of perceptions of tutor evaluation in problem-based learning tutorials. Medical Education, 44 9: 892-899. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2923.2010.03749.x

Author Papinczak, T
Title An exploration of perceptions of tutor evaluation in problem-based learning tutorials
Journal name Medical Education   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0308-0110
Publication date 2010-09-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-2923.2010.03749.x
Volume 44
Issue 9
Start page 892
End page 899
Total pages 8
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Language eng
Formatted abstract
CONTEXT Within problem-based learning
(PBL) tutorials, the relationship between student
and tutor is predicated on the tutor
adopting the role of mentor and metacognitive
coach. This rapport differs considerably from
the traditional teacher–student relationship
and is likely to impact on the process and outcomes
of tutor evaluations. Such evaluations are
a ubiquitous means of providing feedback to
tutors from students about the quality of their
facilitation. Although critiqued in the literature
as ‘popularity contests’, tutor evaluations are
commonly used in tertiary institutions for
purposes of recruitment, re-employment and
METHODS This study seeks to provide insight
into students’ and tutors’ perceptions of evaluations
of teaching within PBL tutorials. As a
unique teaching and learning environment, the
PBL tutorial requires sophisticated facilitation
skills of tutors and considerable autonomy from
students. Qualitative data were gathered from
three focus group discussions and one in-depth
interview with first- and second-year medical
students and their PBL tutors.
RESULTS Thematic analysis identified four
major themes, including: defining the ‘ideal’
tutor; making unthinking or deliberately false
evaluations; promoting a consumer mentality,
and providing support for tutors. An underlying
suspicion of the purpose of the evaluation
process was apparent among tutors and
CONCLUSIONS Findings suggest that, within
the PBL tutorial environment at least, regularly
evaluating tutors creates mistrust and confusion
among the medical school, the tutor and the
student on several levels. Suggestions for
further research are proposed.
© 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Keyword Students
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2011 Collection
School of Medicine Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 5 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Sun, 05 Sep 2010, 10:03:41 EST