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Teaching and Learning in Medicine
An International Journal
ISSN: 1040-1334 (Print) 1532-8015 (Online) Journal homepage:
Actions (Can) Speak Louder Than Words
Anna T. Cianciolo
To cite this article: Anna T. Cianciolo (2017) Actions (Can) Speak Louder Than Words, Teaching
and Learning in Medicine, 29:4, 361-362, DOI: 10.1080/10401334.2017.1384256
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Published online: 11 Oct 2017.
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Download by: [University of Florida]
Date: 28 October 2017, At: 03:45
2017, VOL. 29, NO. 4, 361–362
Downloaded by [University of Florida] at 03:45 28 October 2017
Actions (Can) Speak Louder Than Words
I am pleased to present in this issue Teaching and
Learning in Medicine’s (TLM’s) third annual Conversation Starters series. I would like to extend a hearty
“Welcome back!” to those familiar with the series and
eager to read this year’s thoughtful commentaries.
Readers new to this series can learn what Conversation Starters is all about from the detailed introduction I provided for the first installment in 20151 and
the second in 2016.2
It is exciting, once again, to work with the Group
on Educational Affairs (GEA) and the Medical Education Scholarship Research and Evaluation (MESRE)
Section to spotlight the kind of groundbreaking
inquiry presented each year at regional GEA spring
meetings. These meetings, with their local settings
and relatively modest head count, provide an excellent opportunity for social networking and scholarly
community building around the medical education
questions we all share. Over the past few years, we
have sought with Conversation Starters to extend the
face-to-face discussions going on at these meetings to
national and international participants, broadening
community development and deepening inquiry, with
the hope of preserving the sense of presence and collegiality of in-person conversation. Our intent has
been to foster collaboration and advance scholarship,
ideally promoting journal article publications and successful GEA grant proposals. Activity around the
commentaries published previously in this series—
online views, citations, social media sharing, followup publications, and new collaborations—suggests
that we are on the right track. We are eager to build
on this momentum by sharing new thoughts about
intriguing pilot work presented this spring. Please
join our expert commentators in considering the
implications of these studies for theory development,
educational practice, and larger programs of research.
This year’s commentaries were stimulated by a
diverse set of investigations that went beyond verbal
self-report data collection methods, such as surveys,
interviews, and focus groups, commonly used in medical education research. The selected studies each featured analysis of actual behavior, from ongoing surgical
procedures to different forms of technology-enabled
instruction. The Central Region commentary “Teaching, Learning, and Performance in the Surgical
Workplace: Insights from the Examination of IntraOperative Interactions” ponders the implications of
microlevel descriptions of surgical work for scaffolding
trainee learning, conceptualizing attendings’ real-time
entrustment decisions, and exploring the collaborative
construction of workplace learning and performance.
The Western Region commentary “Emergent Is
Authentic: A Sociomaterial Perspective on SimulationEnhanced Interprofessional Education” considers how
the concept of simulation authenticity may be shaped
by applying a sociomaterial lens to examining “what
happened” in an interprofessional training exercise.
The Northeast Region commentary “‘Yes, and …’:
Exploring the Future of Learning Analytics in Medical
Education” brainstorms the deeper understanding of
learning process that may be achieved by advancements
in learning analytics, including novel metrics and
approaches to analyzing learner-system interactivity.
Finally, the Southern Region commentary “Teachers as
Learners: Developing Professionalism Feedback Skills
via Observed Structured Teaching Encounters” examines how simulation, which requires trainees to act out
their abilities and assumptions, can help medical students engage the cognitive and social complexities of
providing peer feedback on professionalism.
Collectively, these commentaries, and the studies on
which they are based, illustrate the tremendous value of
using deep analytical approaches to construct new
understanding of teaching and learning in medicine.
Behavioral analyses provide the kind of direct observation on performance that is thought to be central to
coaching professional practice. One learning opportunity
offered by this year’s Conversation Starters installment is
role modeling the close examination and reflection
needed to comprehend what is happening in a given
developmental experience and what it might mean for
what to do next.
Before closing, I would like to thank the regional
MESRE Section chairs who helped with selecting the
abstracts featured this year: Nicole Borges (Southern
“Let’s Talk …” (
“Keeping the Conversation Going” (
© 2017 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
Downloaded by [University of Florida] at 03:45 28 October 2017
Region), Christy Boscardin (Western Region), and Steven Rougas (Northeast Region). Making final selections truly was difficult given the generally high level
of quality among the options and the novelty of the
research questions asked. The role of these MESRE
representatives in helping to create this difficulty,
through years of dedicated service to cultivating scholarship in medical education, must be acknowledged. It
is the best sort of problem our community can have.
I also cannot overstate how grateful I am to the expert
commentators who volunteered their time and offered
their voices to this year’s conversations. Their enthusiasm to participate speaks to the positive direction Conversation Starters has taken but says far more about
the collaborative spirit of scholars and educators in the
health professions. It was a tremendous pleasure, once
again, to learn from the experts as we thought hard
about medical education together. We hope that you
will enjoy the result of this effort and that you will
share what you learn with others. We look forward to
hearing your voice in TLM in the future.
GEA informational links
2018 National Grant Program:
Pre-Proposals due February 2018
Regional programs
2018 grant proposals due:
September 2018
Call for Proposals anticipated March 2018
2018 Spring Meeting abstracts due:
December 2017
GEA Central Region (CGEA)
Grant Program:
Spring Meeting:
GEA Northeast Region (NEGEA)
Grant Program:
Spring Meeting:
GEA Southern Region (SGEA)
Grant Program:
Spring Meeting:
GEA Western Region (WGEA)
Grant Program:
Spring Meeting:
Anna T. Cianciolo, Ph.D.
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