Scholarship in Teaching: An Imperative for the 21st Century

Fincher, Ruth-Marie E. MD; Simpson, Deborah E. PhD; Mennin, Stewart P. PhD; Rosenfeld, Gary C. PhD; Rothman, Arthur EdD; McGrew, Martha Cole MD; Hansen, Penelope A. PhD; Mazmanian, Paul E. PhD; Turnbull, Jeffrey M. MD

Section Editor(s): Guest Editors: THE COUNCIL OF ACADEMIC SOCIETIES TASK FORCE ON SCHOLARSHIP

SPECIAL THEME: Expanding the View of Scholarship: ARTICLES

At some medical schools broader definitions of scholarship have emerged along with corresponding changes in their academic reward systems. Such situations are not common, however. The definition of scholarship generally applied by medical schools is unnecessarily narrow and excludes areas of legitimate academic activity and productivity that are vital to the fulfillment of the school's educational mission. The authors maintain that creative teaching with effectiveness that is rigorously substantiated, educational leadership with results that are demonstrable and broadly felt, and educational methods that advance learners' knowledge are consistent with the traditional definition of scholarship. Faculty whose educational activities fulfill the criteria above are scholars and must be recognized by promotion.

The authors specifically address scholarship in education, focusing on teaching and other learning-related activities rather than on educational research, which may be assessed and rewarded using the same forms of evidence as basic science or clinical research. They build on Boyer's work, which provides a vocabulary for discussing the assumptions and values that underlie the roles of faculty as academicians. Next, they apply Glassick et al.'s criteria for judging scholarly work to faculty members' educational activities to establish a basis for recognition and reward consistent with those given for other forms of scholarship. Finally, the authors outline the organizational infrastructure needed to support scholars in education.

Dr. Fincher is professor, Department of Medicine, and vice dean for academic affairs at the Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine, Augusta, Georgia; Dr. Simpson is professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine, and associate dean for educational support and evaluation at the Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Dr. Mennin is professor, Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, and assistant dean for educational development and research at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque, New Mexico; Dr. Rosenfeld is professor, Department of Integrative Biology and Pharmacology, and assistant dean for educational programs, at the University of Texas Medical School, Houston, Texas; Dr. Rothman is professor and director, education office, Department of Medicine, at the University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Dr. McGrew is assistant professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine, at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque, New Mexico; Dr. Hansen is professor of physiology and director, Centre for Collaborative Health Professional Education at the Faculty of Medicine, Memorial University, St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada; Dr. Mazmanian is professor, Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, and Associate Dean for Continuing Medical Education at the School of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Virginia; and Dr. Turnbull is professor, Department of Medicine, and vice dean for education at the University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Correspondence and requests for reprints should be addressed to Dr. Fincher, Vice Dean for Academic Affairs, Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine, CB-1847, Augusta, GA 30912; telephone: (706)721-3529; fax: (706)721-7244; e-mail: 〈rfincher@mail.mcg.edu〉.

© 2000 Association of American Medical Colleges