Background: Advanced Practice Providers (APPs) are becoming a very prevalent part of academic hospital medicine. From 2016 to 2018, APP utilization in academic hospital medicine groups has increased by 23.6%, with 75.7% of academic HMGs now employing APPs. In our division, APPs have become an integral part of our educational fabric, teaching a wide array of medical learners and have expressed interest in developing their skills as educators. Multiple studies have focused on faculty development of medical teachers, but these studies have all focused on physician educators. After a thorough review of PubMed as well as CINAHL, we were unable to identify any papers focusing on APPs as medical educators nor discussing their needs in regards to faculty development.
Purpose: The literature review showed a deficit in programs specific to developing APPs as medical educators. Our objective is to create a program that will foster the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary for APPs in hospital medicine to become confident and competent medical teachers. We are creating a longitudinal faculty development series for our APP faculty, which will focus on developing their skills as medical educators.
Description: A structured questionnaire, based on a validated questionnaire developed by Amin Z et al, was developed. It was reviewed by 5 members of our faculty and modified to fit our needs. Our survey covered 13 different domains relating to teaching and interacting with medical learners. Each question was rated on a 9 point Likert scale with two statements each – one asking to rate their current knowledge and the second what they felt their knowledge should be in the future. Our survey focused on the following areas: knowledge of teaching theory, creating educational objectives, creating content for & delivering effective lectures, teaching communication skills, how to effectively bedside round, how to appropriately assess a learners professional behavior & clinical skills, giving appropriate feedback, and assessing and assisting a struggling learner.We distributed this questionnaire to our 28 member APP group at the University of Colorado Division of Hospital medicine and had 25 responses (89.2% response rate). We found that across all levels of working (1 or less years, 2-3 years, 4+ years) our APP faculty rated their current knowledge as modest (rated 4-6) in all of the above-mentioned areas. With each group wanting their future knowledge base to be substantial (rated 7-9).
Conclusions: This needs assessment clearly shows that all APP faculty – regardless of years of experience – feel the need for improved pedagogical skills. We plan to start a longitudinal faculty development series for our APP group. The lecture series will be focused on the topics that APPs have identified as the areas of highest need. Lectures will cover a wide array of topics, including how to develop and deliver effective small and large group lectures, how to give effective feedback, and how to assess and assist a struggling medical learner.With this program, we are hoping to improve the pedagogical skills of the APPs in our division as well as their confidence as medical teachers. Literature from physician data has shown that will a well-developed curriculum these are goals that are attainable. It is also clear that investing in faculty development can lead to improved personal and professional renewal and joy in educating, so we also hope to positively affect the resilience and retention of our faculty.