NHS Education for Scotland Logo

Scotland Deanery

Home of Medical and Dental Excellence


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

AMEE, Helsinki 2017: Sorry, you are not a winner. Please try again

Claire MacRae presented her project, looking at ways to enhance faculty department, at AMEE (Helsinki, 2017). This work is part of her SMERC funded project "Understanding, valuing and enhancing the role of clinicians who teach" as supervised by Dr Derek Jones (University of Edinburgh) and Dr Terese Stenfors-Hayes (Karolinska Institutet).  Of her project she said:


"Most people who work with medical educators will be familiar with complaints that the role of the teacher is not valued as highly as other roles such as clinician, researcher or manager, and that teachers frequently report feeling that their efforts go unrecognised and unrewarded. If medical schools attempt to tackle this, a typical first response is the introduction of annual ‘teaching awards’ which often have a disappointing impact, despite initially positive feedback.

In this Pecha-Kucha we will present and discuss the findings of a realist literature review, which examined attempts made by various organisations to recognise the contribution of individuals working for them. A realist literature review allows exploration of a wider selection of literature than might normally be considered, and aims to establish what works, for whom, under what circumstances, and why. Our review considered why some types of recognition interventions were more successful than others, and what factors might be contributing to that success.

Our results suggest that, regardless of context, awards ceremonies are amongst the least successful types of recognition, particularly in the long term where they often create a competitive culture in which there are few winners and many losers. More successful strategies involve recognising as many contributors as possible; are based on objective measures of effort or skill; and are context-specific. In other words, organisations need expend time and effort to determine what type of recognition is most valued by the people they are trying to recognise.

A realist review can never provide concrete ‘answers’ to a problem but we hope that our findings will open up discussion about: what constitutes ‘recognition’; what we are trying to achieve through recognition schemes; and how we could get better at recognising teaching."

Return to all news