Every resident deserves a learning plan (also known as support plans) that has been mutually agreed upon by the resident and preceptor at the beginning of the rotation. Learning plans provide a mechanism to communicate expectations between the resident and preceptor.
After completing this module, you will be able to:
Every resident goes through rotations in a different order and has a unique experience on each rotation. One of the most valuable exercises for the resident is to reflect on their own personal needs. These needs should be recorded in a learning plan, which is a document that explicitly outlines the resident's learning goals for the rotation. Learning plans are fluid and should evolve over the training period to meet changing needs. They reflect agreed upon goals set by the resident and the preceptor at a point in time and require tracking and updating periodically.
Learning plans are not just for residents in difficulty. All residents and preceptors should use them. Learning plans:
The University of Ottawa Department of Family Medicine has a tool that can be used to help facilitate the creation of a learning plan: The Academic Support Process - Support Plan. You can download a Microsoft Word version of the template from the Templates and Examples dropdown menu on the Academic Support Process site.
The following table describes the sections of the University of Ottawa Academic Support Process - Support Plan and provides tips for completing each section in the context of a resident at the beginning of their residency:
See Appendix A - Learning Plan Example for an example of a support plan for a resident at the beginning of their residency. For examples of support plans for residents in difficulty see Support Plan Examples on the Academic Support Process website.
Learning objectives are specific and measureable statements that describe what the learner is expected to achieve as a result of engaging in a specific learning activity. Learning objectives serve as a "road map". By knowing where you want the learner to end up, you increase the chances of the learner getting there as your teaching can become more focused and organized. By having learning objectives, the learner will also be able to focus and set priorities in their learning efforts.
When writing learning objectives, use the mnemonic RUMBA (you may be familiar with the mnemonic SMART - either works). Learning objectives should be:
The most critical part of writing learning objectives is choosing an appropriate verb. See "Learning objective verbs" for a list of appropriate learning objective verb
A learning objective has three parts:
What did you like most about the module?
How could the module be improved?
Which idea(s) from this module may have the greatest impact on your clinical teaching?
Department of Family Medicine
University of Ottawa
43 Bruyère Street (Floor 3JB)
Canada K1N 5C8
Faculty Development and Curriculum Coordinator
Tel: 613-562-6335 ext. 1211