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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Craig S Scott
MEDED 522
Seattle Campus

Research in Medical Education

Individualized, problem-based overviews of research methods and research design pertinent to research and scholarship in medical education. Development and sequencing of research projects from conceptualization through literature review, including proposal development, project implementation, data management, analysis, and write-up. Assessment and critical reading of related literature stressed. Offered: A.

Class Description

Health professionals need to continually develop their knowledge bases. The scholarly work of others combined with your personal research and evaluation will provide the foundation for your professional development throughout your career. You will continually become involved in scholarly endeavors that will require you to have a strong foundation in research methodology. This involvement will sometimes result from your desire to learn from, evaluate and/or apply the research of others. At other times it will be the result of your desire or need to generate new knowledge on your own. Whether you develop the abilities to interpret, learn from, or conduct research on your own, your ability to stay current in and contribute to your specialty will depend on your knowledge of and ability to design, implement, critique and analyze research.

There are many established research methods with which you must become familiar if you are to be capable of making sense out of what would otherwise be uninterpretable events and outcomes. Some of these methods are well established. Not only are some of these undergoing revision, but new ones are being developed using increasing technological and computing capabilities. The major objective of this student-center course is to increase your awareness of commonly used research methodologies, as well as approaches you can use to achieve your research, curriculum development or evaluation goals.

This course is run either as a seminar or as independent study with substantial participant input throughout. An individualized problem-solving approach will be followed. Your primary activities will relate to your needs and problems. Much of your effort will be focused on the development of some component of your scholarly project. During the quarter you will be provided with opportunities to present and get feedback on questions and problems related to your individual project.

Recommended preparation

This course in intended for medical students and residents, teaching scholars in the Department of Medical Education's Teaching Scholars Program, and for graduate students in the various disciplines that focus on teaching, learning and practice in the health sciences.

Class Assignments and Grading

While the course covers the spectrum of research from problem formulation to completion, you will be expected to demonstrate significant progress on only one or two of the major components of your research project. The reason for this flexibility is learner variability. At the beginning of the course some will be at the research question specification or proposal conceptualization phase of their research. These individuals will be expected to develop a complete proposal and literature review. Others will have already progressed past these phases of their research prior to the course and will, therefore, be expected to demonstrate progress in later phases of the research process.

This course is intended to add to your growing knowledge of research methods. During the quarter you will be expected to develop some significant component of a scholarly project of your choosing.

At the conclusion of the course you should be able to:

(1) Develop a plan for your scholarly project that incorporates the basic principles of the scientific method. The plan should include project identification, planning, and implementation, as well as a complete description of your scholarly activities for this academic year.

(2) Identify and write researchable questions and hypotheses.

(3) Efficiently use the world wide web to obtain information relative to your planned scholarship and research interests.

(4) Apply basic concepts of experimental and quasi-experimental design.

(5) Identify threats to validity and ways to control them.

(6) Conduct an on-line literature search related to your scholarly project.

(7) Describe federal policies and regulations related to research in medical education..

(8) Discuss the major considerations relating to human subjects review regulations.

Medical Education 522 is a two credit seminar or independent study course, depending on the number of students that enroll. The cornerstone of your involvement will be the student's Plan of Self-Directed Study. This Plan will define their responsibilities for the quarter. It will enable the student to begin working on the research, development, and/or evaluation project of their choosing. The Plan of Self-Directed Study for the quarter will be the main focus of the first individual session with the instructor. This will occur during the third week of the quarter. For registered students the course will be graded on a satisfactory/non-satisfactory basis. A satisfactory grade will be awarded for satisfactory completion of all assignments. Assignments and expectations will vary from one course participant to another depending upon each participantís registration status (e.g., medical student, doctoral student, teaching scholar) and the nature of each individualís scholarly project. Whether officially registered or not, you will be expected to: (1) Participate in discussions related to assigned readings and group discussions; (2) Plan a scholarly project for the year that includes tasks and timelines, and; (3) Complete a component of your scholarly project.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Craig S Scott
Date: 12/15/2003