For this post, we’re linking up with Michael Rowe in South Africa and his excellent site /usr/space. Michael is a physiotherapist and educator in South Africa, with a passion for teaching and learning. He is an active member of the Critical Physiotherapy Network and a regular blogger on health care education, pedagogy and technology-informed learning.
Earlier this week, Michael posted a blog exploring the possibilities of assessing teams, not individuals.
Assessing teams instead of individuals
Patient outcomes are almost always influenced by how well the team works together, yet all of the disciplines conduct assessments of individual students. Yes, we might ask students who they would refer to, or who else is important in the management of the patient, but do we ever actually watch a student talk to a nurse, for example? We assess communication skills based on how they interact with the patient, but why don’t we make observations of how students communicate with other members of the team when it comes to preparing a management plan for the patient?
What would an assessment task look like if we assessed teams, rather than individuals. What if we we asked an OT, physio and SALT student to sit down and discuss the management of a patient? Imagine how much insight this would give us in terms of students’ 1) interdisciplinary knowledge, 2) teamwork, 3) communication skills, 4) complex clinical reasoning, and 5) patient-centred practice? What else could we learn in such an assessment? I propose that we would learn a lot more about power relations between the students in different disciplines. We might even get some idea of students’ levels of empathy for peers and colleagues, and not just patients.
For the rest of Michael’s blogpost, please follow this link to Michael’s site /usr/space: Exploring clinical education at a South African university.