Planning a local project


Planning can make all the difference between a project being a drag and being really effective

SO you’ve got a burning idea…you’ve noticed that there is a gaping hole in your local service for teaching X. You think you’ve got a brilliant idea to plug that gap. But hang on a minute, have you thought about:

 

  1. what will happen when you leave?
  2. who’s going to do all that boring admin?
  3. How will we know if it’s all worth it?

Asking ourselves these questions will help ensure we set up a project so it won’t drain our own resources and it’s not just a “flash” in the pan.

That being said, there’s nothing wrong with doing a project for a defined period of time, the success you and your team will get from that will be immeasurable, but do make sure you know what you are setting out to do.

The WBYHT team have created a starting guide to thinking about your project here.

Be a compassionate leader


Planning for success is all about being compassionate to ourselves and our communities. It’s about recognising what is achievable and not pushing ourselves into stress or difficulty.

Get it together

Plan your beginning, middle and end.

Beginning- what’s your vision?, who, what, when, where, why?

Middle – HOW – resources? people? what are your objectives. 

End- what have we learnt? what will we share? will this continue? how?

 

 

Miro- a planning app for your team

Define your vision

Understand the need

 

know your destination

Get support

Whatever you are planning make sure you talk to as many people as you can about it. Get a variety of perspectives and an understanding of what you want to achieve

 

 

NWLA

look around

Look around at what’s been done before, either in the literature or locally. 

Understanding the methods of what you are trying to achieve can be key to setting up a robust programme.

Medical teacher journal

learn from it

Evaluating our teaching has many uses. We can understand our learners better, ourselves and our practice as well as share learning more broadly with stakeholders and the wider educational team.

 

 

abc of evaluation

There are many elements of a programme that you can choose to evaluate and each one will have its own approach and things to think about. An example of a varied menu of project evaluation is given below:

 

learner experience


20%

learner outcomes


40%

your reflection


60%

peer review


100%

 

 

Evaluating teaching using confidence

 

How many times have you been told “if you don’t evaluate it, it never happened?!”. Not only, it never happened, but how do you know how it went? How do you change things for next time? 

How often do you get a paper survey after a “teaching” session at work? Can you remember what was on it? Lots of likert scales? (rate this on a scale of 0-5, like-dislike, agree-disagree). Or lots of free text?

 

Planning how you evaluate your teaching session should be an essential building block of your overall plan.

Thinking about who the learning affects (and how) can be a good place to start to think about evaluation. 

Evaluating our teaching can be as simple as assessing what has been learnt or not and how this matches up with our plan for the learners. Millers pyramid is a simple way of thinking about this.

 

Millers pyramid

Confident?

Miller describes knowing and knowing how as the first steps towards doing. So how do we assess whether someone knows something after we’ve taught them it?

Confidence is a commonly used proxy to describe a learner feeling that they “know how” to do something.

Easy to measure?

There are plenty of examples in the literature of studies where they’ve sought an easy to establish headline measure of learning. 

It’s simple and straightforward to ask someone if they have more confidence now that you’ve taught them what you’ve wanted them to learn.

Its an accepted measure

 

Confidence is something we all understand right? It’s a universal term. 

At an education conference if you look through the posters you’ll be sure to find a good number of them have used confidence as the measure of the effectiveness of their teaching.

Self esteem

As teachers, we often want to build our learners up. WBYHT’s medagogy describes an intent to teaching that includes building a learners self esteem.

If we can demonstrate our learners have confidence then this is surely good evidence of this? We have bolstered their confidence. 

 

 

Confident?

Now you’ve read this, have a look at the arguments against using confidence as a measure of learning

No confidence…

 

 

V

“We measure it on likert scales, before and after, some will even try and extrapolate a golden p-value from it”

A vote of no confidence?

Every where you look in medical education research you will find confidence. We measure it on likert scales, before and after, some will even try to extrapolate a golden p-value from it. But have you ever wondered if it’s an acceptable  or good measure of learning?

Well you may or may not be surprised to hear that some people have…


 

Evaluate with confidence

  • What does confidence mean to you?
  • What does competence mean to you?
  • Are these universal terms or is there ambiguity?

 

what even is confidence?


meaning is everything

Think about it, what is confidence? how do we measure it? Would my understanding of confidence be the same as yours? would my assessment of confidence match yours? Take a look at these resources and make up your own mind.

Roland et al Dunning-Kruger

and what about Competence?

Competence is…

my idea of competence?

your idea?

The GMC’s/ NMC / other governing bodies idea?

Teunnisen and Wilkinson (2012) in describing Erauts view on knowledge building in the work place describe competence as “meeting other people’s (often implicit) expectations”

 

How do we measure it?

If we’re planning on thinking about competence or confidence as an outcome of teaching how do we measure it? Is it the teachers measure of it? or the “learners” self reported measure of it…?

So what next? If we’re not going to measure “confidence” or competence what do we measure? 

Well…that is down to your medagogy.

 

Planning a “one-off” teaching session

what’s brought you here?


Why plan?

If you know what you’re talking about, you don’t need to plan right?  Well…think about it, the world is full of brilliant people who “know” a lot, but fail to teach well.

Why is that?

Teaching is a skill

 

It takes more than just knowing, we need to understand and build experience in how people learn. We need to be able to translate, design, communicate, plan and reflect. 

 Learners need master crafts people who care about them and have the motivation to plan effective sessions and reflect on how they might make them better…

 

 

Where to start? 

Planning out a session can give you the confidence to deliver something of quality. But where to start? 

The tips below will help you to begin to think about planning evidenced based, best practice teaching.

 

Who?

An easy and important place to start is with the WHO. Who are the learners you would like to teach? The more you know about them and what they need to learn, the more you will be able to make an effective plan.

For example: you have been asked to teach Basic Life Support…how you will do this will very much depend on whether they are, for example:

1) 5-year olds

2) third year nursing students

3) the care staff of a nursing home.

This question is a great example of how the theory of constructivism plays out.

Where?

The educational setting is often forgotten when planning teaching. Make it part of your plan to consider these key issues:

How will I choose and set up the space (real or virtual) to support how I want to interact with the learners (and the learners with each other)?

What impact will this setting have on the learners? For instance, if it’s in A&E will they be able to concentrate? If its in the educational centre, how can I make it authentic? If its online, how can I minimise distractions?

The “what”…objectives

Objectives describe the finer details of “what” learning we want our teaching sessions to deliver. It is essential to be clear to ourselves about the objectives of our session. What do we really want our learners to learn?

There are many tools out there to help you think about this. Learning taxonomies have been used by teachers for decades to think about what kind of learning they want to achieve.

 

Taxonomies

 

The WBYHT teaching plan

Teaching plan template

This basic template was created to help you consider your lessons and plan for learning

The how…

Luckily, there is a lot out there to help us with “the how” of delivering learning  

Online teaching

There are loads of tools to help us deliver learning online and many of them are free or have free versions. In the tech blog, Nate describes some tips from his ammo box

one-off tech

Maximising interactivity

You will likely have experienced recently what it feels like to be in a lecture where you haven’t been engaged. The person leading the session hasn’t interacted with you in anyway and you’re starting to zone out and look at your phone…

interactive theory

Social learning

At the frontier of learning theory are the social learning theories such as Engstroms activity theory, communities of practice and transformational learning

social learning

Mim

The “affective” /feeling domain is really important to me when I plan lessons. I want people to connect with each other and what’s being taught

 

Nate

 

I want to ensure maximum interactivity. I need to plan what I want them to learn and how best to do it interactively

 

“Medagogy”

 

It occurred to me today that the language we use around teaching and learning in medical education or “health professions education” is really lacking in spirit. 

The term “pedagogy” is one I have circled as a learner myself, hoping to understand this illusive concept. I like that it tries to capture something of the intention of teaching, the philosophy and politics as well as the practice. So why not “medagogy”?  

““Pedagogy is more than the accumulation of strategies…it is formed by a view of mind, of learning and learners and the kinds of knowledge and outcomes valued” The Power of Pedagogy- Leach and Moon”

Mim LEach

WBYHT

an example


Royal Local Hospital, ICU 

 

 

Communities

The Intensive care unit at RLH is renowned for recruiting foundation doctors into anaesthetics and critical care. But why? The unit is fairly unremarkable looking, the staff room has a nice view, the nurses are pleasant and the consultants too but is that enough? The actual answer lies in their medagogy, how they enact their “community of practice” (CoP).

From day one everyone is a valued and respected team member with the potential to learn whatever they want. The FY1 is treated with the same potential as an ACCS trainee already on the program. Nurses are supported equally to gain skills like doing arterial lines and everyone is a key member of a constant process of improving the unit. Above all else they prioritise education, seeing it as an integral part of  the days work, not as an add on, or something to eat your sandwiches to. The ICU at RLH has clear medagogical intentions.

Get to know yourself… what are your medagogical intentions?

Teaching should build a learners self esteem

This is my number one, central doctrine for teaching, the one I would hope to impart on anyone embarking on a teaching path.

  1. Set out to build your learners self-esteem
  2.  Know your theory from your methods
  3. Get to know your learner, what do they need to learn?
  4. plan- how are you going to establish the best way to teach for your learners to learn
  5. reflect, reflect, reflect- what went well? what didn’t work?

  • know yourself (clean your “johari’s window” regularly)
  • Get to know your learner (what do they care about, what do they need?)
  • Get to know your community (who else will be supporting this learner/s?)
  • Get your own support (who’s helping you clean your johari’s window?)

What about you?

So what is your medagogy?

What kind of a teacher do you want to be? What do you want to accomplish by teaching? where have you come from (philosophically, geographically, culturally)? where do you want to get to?

 

Heading Level 4

Teaching online is spreading like…well lets just say if it had an R number it would be high. Like all teaching it’s important to carefully consider your aims and methodology. Nate dives into some top tech tips for you here.

“A blockquote highlights important information, which may or may not be an actual quote. It uses distinct styling to set it apart from other content on the page.”

Nate Betteridge

WBYHT tech team

 

Webinar teaching tips

 

John Dewey, an American philosopher and education reformer once said “Give the pupils something to do, not something to learn; and the doing is of such a nature as to demand thinking; learning naturally results.”  Apart from being able to verbalise something much better than I ever could John Dewey highlights a significant point – one which is key to effective online teaching.

Interaction is and should be the cornerstone of online education. It is not good enough simply to share our screen and talk through our presentation. Evidence suggests that we have a MAXIMUM of ten minutes of attention with students/trainees online compared with the ‘normal’ twenty minutes face to face [ref]. What’s even more startling is how rapidly that attention time drops without engagement or interaction.

 

Dewey

Think about it – how many times will you look at your phone, or glance out of the window when you are in a room with a facilitator stood in front of you? Now imagine yourself sat in front of a computer, in the comfort of your own home where you can turn off the camera and mute your microphone (always remember to mute your microphone). No one is monitoring you – How long do you think you could continue to listen to a webinar where the person is reading off their slides before the temptation to check that latest notification on your phone? I know it certainly would be less than ten minutes for me.

The challenge that comes with transferring teaching to an online platform is continually thinking about how do I engage my learner? This not only allows us to ensure they are still with us but helps to know if the pace you are going is the correct one. The normal feedback mechanisms of reading the room are gone (facial expressions, questions and general engagement), therefore we have to adapt to a new setting.

Tips and tricks

So how do we keep online learning interactive? How do we give the trainees something to do? As John Dewey describes in doing we demand thinking which results in learning

Chat functionality

This is a basic but useful tool. Encouraging questions and then monitoring what comes up is really helpful in allowing real time discussion with the learner.

It assures them that you are interacting and dealing with some of their agendas and not just forcing your own upon them. Even better is when other learners start interacting and answering questions. It isn’t always the most inclusive method however and you may find the same people using this function/answering the questions.

Polls

A helpful way of getting a straw poll about a topic. This can often lead to greater participation as often the poll is anonymous. This will help those more shy learners to start interacting with the group and engage with a question. Polls can help to gain information about how many people feel comfortable with a topic or they can be used to check understanding or the speed of your session.

Hands up/request to speak

A number of online platforms have this functionality which allows for real time, ‘face to face’ discussion or questions. It can be really useful as it breaks up the presenter from speaking all the time – plus it reflects the style of more classroom based teaching. The challenge with this is similar to the chat functionality as it may favour the learner who is more confident and willing to articulate their learning. It also is more time consuming and difficult to speak with every learner (depending on group size).

Padlet / collaborative whiteboards

These are a great tool for encouraging learning together. Padlet.com is a free online whiteboard tool that allows anyone with the link to double click and add their own ideas to it. The beauty of it is that it doesn’t require people to sign up to it before collaborating. The free version you can sign up to has a limit on the number of boards you can use but still gives you enough in my opinion. There are other collaborative whiteboards and tools available e.g. Miro, Trello – but often require users to create a username first. These are a great way for keeping your sessions interactive as it allows for discussion, participation and idea generation in a real time online environment.

Quizzes

 I love a Kahoot quiz! This website allows you to create a quiz that’s fun and colourful and can be run remotely with people logging in via their phones or computers. This can be used really well maybe as an icebreaker or at the end of a session to assess learning. Gamification of learning is a really powerful tool and Kahoot does this in a really non-threatening and enjoyable way.

 

 

 

Check out padlet for yourself

 

padlet

 

 

 

 

Check out Kahoot…

 

kahoot

One final thing to say is it’s always worth thinking how does this interactivity help achieve the learning objectives? Interactivity for the sake of it is not advisable either – the sweet spot is using a tool that demands the learner to think about the objective and the learning will occur naturally.

 

 

Have you put Nates suggestions into action?

Tell us about it!