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Terminology in Continuing Education: A Hybrid Methodology for Improving the Use and Reporting of Interventions in Continuing Education

Grant, Rachel E. RN, BScN, MN; Van Hoof, Thomas J. MD, EdD; Sajdlowska, Joanna BSc; Miller, Nicole E. BScN, RN; Kitto, Simon PhD

Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions: October 2015 - Volume 35 - Issue - p S45–S50
doi: 10.1097/CEH.0000000000000014
Methodology
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Abstract: Researchers and leaders working in quality improvement and continuing education have a variety of interventions available to change clinician behavior and to improve patient outcomes. Evidence from systematic reviews and meta-analyses of such interventions is often mixed, with methodological weaknesses contributing to challenges in summarizing and interpreting evidence. Confusion and inconsistency surrounding many of the terms contributes to this challenge. This international study was commissioned by the Society for Academic Continuing Medical Education to use expert opinion to improve the consistency of important educational terminology by describing the essential components of a set of educational interventions, such as educational meetings. This article will describe how this project uses the literature and an expert consensus process to improve precision around the conceptualization and implementation of educational interventions. This article will offer an in-depth description of a hybrid methodology that blends the Chaffee framework for concept explication with a modified Delphi technique that constitutes a novel expert consensus process. This article concludes with recommendations for other scholars replicating this process.

Ms. Grant: Project Manager, Department of Surgery, and Research Associate, Continuing Professional Development, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada. Dr. Van Hoof: Associate Professor, University of Connecticut School of Nursing, Storrs, CT, and Associate Professor, Department of Community Medicine and Health Care, University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Farmington, CT. Ms. Sajdlowska: Research Assistant, School of Nursing, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT. Ms. Miller: Research Assistant, School of Nursing, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT. Dr. Kitto: Associate Professor, Department of Innovation in Medical Education, and Director of Research, Office of Continuing Professional Development, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Correspondence: Simon Kitto, PhD, University of Ottawa, 451 Smyth Road, Room 2211, Ottawa, Ontario K1H 8MG, Canada; e-mail: skitto@uottawa.ca.

Disclosures: The authors report the Society for Academic Continuing Medical Education (SACME) commissioned the project with funding from Pfizer, Inc. The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and not necessarily those of SACME or Pfizer, Inc. The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Received September 25, 2015

Accepted September 29, 2015

© 2015 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.
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