The Department of Family and Community Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston has the responsibility for the delivery of this intensive training program. International family doctors will attend a four week program based at the Kirby location. The program will run from Monday to Friday each week (excluding any public holidays) with each day lasting 6-7 hours. Starting and finishing times may have some flexibility following discussion with course attendees. Each doctor will have a mentor appointed during their visit and open-plan or shared office space will be provided. Attendees will need to bring their own laptop computers, but internet connections and access to a printer will be provided. Translators and interpreters for many languages are available.
The program will include visits to fully functioning teaching family medicine, clinics and community health center and hospitals. Attendees will go in pairs to these practices where they will have the opportunity to discuss training issues with the family physician supervisor and see how family medicine operates in United States. Opportunities to meet with medical students and general practice trainees will be provided.
There will be pre-reading required and learning plans will be developed with their mentor on arrival. The program will focus on the needs of the attendees and as a result will require a number of less formal sessions where goals are developed, learning strategies implemented and detailed feedback sought. As family medicine is a patient-centered discipline, the education program should be learner-centered. This is an important outcome of the program.
The evaluation process used in this Special Academic Fellowship is based on the following assumptions about the learning process:
- Learners should be responsible for the establishment and achievement of educational goals
- Learning occurs best when learners direct their energy towards that which interests them personally and professionally
- Learners need to evolve toward becoming self-motivators and self-evaluators in their professional careers
Several strategies will be used to evaluate the fellowship:
Project Evaluation: Fellows will be required to complete specific projects for several of the areas of the fellowship (e.g., a curriculum guide, a small research grant, etc.). Each of the projects will be evaluated by the instructors of the particular area and by the fellowship director.
Teaching Practice Feedback: During the teaching skills instructional activities, fellows will be expected to demonstrate the skills learned by (a) preparing and delivering a short lecture; (b) leading a small group; and (c) providing clinical teaching instruction to medical students and/or residents during a precepting simulation exercise. Fellows’ performance in each of these activities will be evaluated by the fellows themselves and the participating faculty. The fellows will receive direct feedback on their teaching performance from their peers and the instructor during those exercises.
Mid-Fellowship Evaluation Focus Group: During the third week of the program, the fellowship director will moderate an evaluation focus group with the fellows to assess the progress of the program and of individual fellows. This meeting will provide feedback to the program administration and will allow for corrections and changes that will facilitate the achievement of program goals by the end of the six-week period.
Participant Questionnaire: Fellows will complete an evaluation form on each of the didactic sessions of the fellowship. In addition, they will complete a program evaluation questionnaire at the end of the fellowship to assess the overall quality and effectiveness of the program. Results from all the evaluation methods and processes will be used for feedback to fellows and faculty and for program revision and refinement.