“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.


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