Harvard Macy Community Blog

Fostering the ongoing connectedness of health professions educators committed to transforming health care delivery and education.

20th Anniversary Video Blog Series: A Community of Innovators, Faculty Reflections

Educating to Innovate in Healthcare:
Twenty Years of The Harvard Macy Institute

​The Harvard Macy Institute was unique in the continuing professional development field when it was created in 1994 as an inter-professional, international incubator for innovators in healthcare education. Over the past twenty years, the Institute has been an engine of change in education, creating innovation-inspiring communities including over 3,500 scholars representing more than 800 institutions across the globe, including over 170 institutions that sent five or more faculty. Today, alumni innovations are enhancing the care of patients worldwide.

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From Rejection to Funding: The Evolution of a Scholarly Project

As a former high school teacher and professional violinist, I’ve always had stories to tell. I’ve always had a lot of “cred” as a clinician educator, and when I speak about teaching, people usually listen because I have an off-the-beaten-track perspective. However, when it came to developing an academic focus and then asking for money to support that focus, my background seemed distant and my ideas lacked clarity. I tried my hand at writing a grant proposal, but it was rejected multiple times. Enter Harvard Macy.

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What can the Humanities offer Children with Medical Complexity and Healthcare Education?

On face-value, the Humanities and healthcare education are at opposite poles.  The Humanities give voice to human beings’ imagination and emotions, and in turn give us space for for self-reflection and self-care. In contrast, healthcare education classically values cognitive and psychomotor learning. In spite of this opposition, as is often the case, opposites do attract.

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Gregg Wells

Cognitive, psychomotor, and hu...

This essay wonderfully describes the humane dimension of medical practice. Medical education can become immersed only in the cogn... Read More
Saturday, 16 July 2016 11:11 PM
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The Great Divide: Bringing educational theory to practice in surgical education

This time last year I was sitting in a classroom at the school of education, learning about metacognition, reflection, and deep understanding.  It had only been 18 short years since I graduated high school and I couldn’t help but wonder - How did I get here?  I had finished my ear, nose, and throat (ENT) surgical training and quickly went from learning about resecting cancer and performing airway reconstruction to learning about teaching for understanding. 

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The Multiple Choice Conundrum

For anyone who has ever written multiple choice questions, or taken a multiple choice exam (which includes basically everyone on the planet who can read), the limitations of this type of test are pretty obvious. In fact, if you look into the history of the multiple choice question (MCQ) format, it is interesting to learn that it was never meant to become our only standardized test method. It was invented to test potential military recruits for intelligence, but was later discarded when it was found not to be reliable. The uses we now put MCQ tests to are staggering.

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Gregg Wells

MCQs have roles in the future ...

MCQs should not retire, but they need to stay employed with tasks for which they are best suited. MCQs help a student devel... Read More
Monday, 27 June 2016 1:01 AM
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