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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 30  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 189-191

Co-editor notes

1 Co-Editors, Education for Health, KIT Health, Royal Tropical Institute, Amsterdam, Netherlands
2 Co-Editors, Education for Health, Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research, Rockford, Illinois, USA
3 University of Illinois, Rockford, Illinois, USA

Date of Web Publication18-Apr-2018

Correspondence Address:
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/efh.EfH_10_18

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How to cite this article:
Flinkenflogel M, McKinley D, Glasser M. Co-editor notes. Educ Health 2017;30:189-91

How to cite this URL:
Flinkenflogel M, McKinley D, Glasser M. Co-editor notes. Educ Health [serial online] 2017 [cited 2023 Jun 6];30:189-91. Available from:

Welcome to this new issue of Education for Health. E-technology is finding its place in health professions education (HPE), and in this edition, we have several contributions to demonstrate this. E-learning has become an essential part of HPE, which will be discussed by our Peruvian colleagues, while Indian colleagues describe a blended learning rural program. Colleagues from the UK and the USA take us into the gamified world and virtual reality (VR).

With two out of three of the co-editors from Education for Health being female, our journal proves that also in our field, gender inequality is being reduced. Gender, the gender gap, and gender education in HPE are essential though we are still far from an equitable situation as one of our authors shows in her contribution.

In this issue, we are again pleased to have articles from colleagues around the globe: United Arab Emirates, Rwanda, United Kingdom, United States of America, India, Ireland, and Italy. We are happy to have several student contributions, proving that this journal is not only for educators but also for students becoming educators.

Situational awareness (SA) is an important factor in clinical decision-making by health-care providers and patient safety. Frere et al. explored how much SA is used in the formative objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) assessment tools. In their article “Measuring Situation Awareness in Medical Education Objective Structured Clinical Examination Guides,” he and his colleagues analyzed their own OSCE tool and two online available OSCE guides. The OSCE tools seem to predict performance in the first level (perception) but less in the second (comprehension) and third level (projection) of SA.

Dash, Abdalla, and Hussain describe in their original research article “Use of International Foundations of Medicine Clinical Sciences Examination to Evaluate Students' Performance in the Local Examination at the University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.” Their study shows that external assessment of student performances and curriculum outcomes can improve the local assessment and provide external validity. Moreover, as assessment drives learning, they report that such improvements can be reflected in the student's learning process.

The descriptive research article “Developing and Implementing a Global Emergency Medicine Course: Lessons Learned from Rwanda” by Yi and Umuhire et al. provide insight into the newly developed EMIT training (Emergency Medicine in the Tropics) in Rwanda in which participants from high-income countries are trained in a low-income country-hospital emergency medicine setting. Exchange between visiting and local participants and teachers was key in the training to increase clinical and cultural insights. In the financial model, the HIC participants paid for the local experience, and the gained funds were used for the national and international learning opportunities of local residents that were previously inaccessible. The authors state that this experience shows that global emergency medicine programs can be beneficial training for participants from HIC and LMICs that is also logistically and financially sustainable.

Students with a high self-centered impulsivity and fearlessness have a higher likelihood of choosing a career in surgery was the outcome of research done at the University of Messina, Italy. In their article “Personality Traits Predict a Medical Student Preference to Pursue a Career in Surgery,” Muscatello et al. describe how the psychopathic personality inventory revised version (PPI-R) was used to explore a correlation between career choice and personality traits in medical students. As a surgical career is often stressful and highly demanding, a high PPI-R personality can be supportive in being successful in this profession.

In 2013, situational judgment test (SJT) was introduced for all medical graduates in the UK to measure nonacademic attributes such as professionalism. Not surprisingly, little preparation is provided for this assessment, and students seem to have high anxiety over time pressures and heavy weighting of this single examination. In the brief communication “Near Peer-assisted Learning to Improve Confidence for Medical Students' Situational Judgment Tests,” Gostelow et al. describe how their mixed methods' research showed that a near peer-assisted learning course was well received by students, provided them good insight in the STJ, and improved their overall confidence in how to approach the test.

Common eye problems play a significant role in primary health care. In the brief communication “Needs Assessment of Ophthalmology Education for Undergraduate Medical Students – A Study from a Medical College in South India,” Divya et al. discuss the perception of undergraduate medical students on their knowledge and skills in ophthalmology. They conclude that, in their institute, students receive more hours of ophthalmology education than is required by the International Council of Ophthalmology and the Indian Medical Council. Overall, they found that these students have a satisfactory understanding of ophthalmology in general though a gap is found in community ophthalmology.

Virtual reality (VR) uses a simulated world with a three-dimensional, computer-generated environment, in which learners interact with graphical characters. Real et al. describe in their brief communication, “Resident Perspectives on Communication Training that Utilizes Immersive Virtual Reality,” how in their research the majority of students perceived VR in communication training as a useful educational tool. Although bedside-teaching and standardized patients were still being preferred over VR, this technology might be promising as a complementary tool to current bedside teaching, not only in communication skills but also in other aspects of medical curricula.

Stress is an important factor for results in education. Vyas, Stratton, and Soares shared in their brief communication “Sources of Medical Student Stress” outcomes of research done in four USA universities. While the majority of students reported some levels of stress, this tended to be higher in females and in 1st year students, with academic performances and performance satisfaction as important stressors. Different stressors we less or more important dependent on year of education, for example, finances in the final year. They argue that medical schools need to aware and supporting student health, with sleep education, time management, and financial advice as examples to reduce the overall stress.

Oommen et al. from the Christian Medical College, Vellore, India developed a curriculum on non-communicable diseases (NCDs) for their MPH program. They argued that even though we develop new courses/curricula all the time, documentation of the process is not common and sharing and publishing these experiences can serve as a guide to others and enhancing quality of HPE. Their brief communication “Curriculum Development for a Module on Noncommunicable Diseases for the Master of Public Health Program” serves as an example for others.

In the brief communication “Evaluation of a distance learning academic support program for medical graduates during rural service in India,” Vyas et al. describe the evaluation of a year-long fellowship in secondary hospital medicine at the Christian Medical College, Vellore, India. Using mobile phones was an important part of the e-learning program. Significant outcomes were that the program strengthened the positive attitudes of graduates toward working in secondary hospitals and therefore might improve rural retention.

In the practical advice paper, “Academics Anonymous: A medical student's 12-step guide to scholarly productivity,” Burgeois et al. created a 12-step advice tool for facilitating productive academic writing by students. He argues that producing publications and other scholarly activities is well within the reach of motivated medical students though the first step, getting started is an important hurdle to take. With collaborative mentorship from faculty members, they want students to be not only digital-native consumers of information but also professional contributors.

Despite that women in leadership roles improve communication, teamwork, networking, values and vision, and decision-making, there still is a gap between men and women in higher positions. In her contribution as a student, “Women Deans' Perceptions of the Gender Gap in American Medical Deanships,” Elizabeth Humberstone tried to answer the question “Why is gender inequity so static in academic medicine?” She analyzed the interviews of eight female deans of the medical faculty in the USA and formulated barriers to women's advancement in leadership in academic medicine. One of her conclusions was that positive mentoring can have a big impact on moving more women into leadership roles, and open communication about career advancement may facilitate more women to become leaders.

Godinho, Murthy, and Ciraj, from India, argue that there is a need for health professions educationists to design and develop programs that address health policy and advocacy training in the regions with the greatest need for health systems strengthening. In the letter to the editor, “Health Policy for Health Professions Students: Building Capacity for Community Advocacy in Developing Nations,” Godinho provides several examples of such programs, one being the Medical Model United Nations project which he also presented at the 2017 World Summit on Social Accountability.

Gamification, which uses the human desire to play, can be applied in medical curricula to stimulate learning, collaboration and provide useful feedback for learners, however research on the long-term positive and negative effects has not yet been done. In the letter to the editor from Connor Qiu, “The Impact of a Gamified World on Medical Education,” the authors promote the introduction of more gamified educational tools to fulfill the requirements of an ever-changing educational landscape that is up-to-date with the present world.

In “Undergraduate Research Training: Elearning Experience in Peru,” FasanandoVela et al. describe how e-learning was an added value in research training. The Scientific Society of Medical Students has provided several training instruments in research methodology and scientific writing in the past years with a positive impact on students.

Together these articles meet the goals of the journal to share work experiences and disseminate research findings in the field of HPE, to educate educators worldwide, and improve health-care delivery and the health of the global community.

Please let us know which articles are most meaningful to you as you develop community- and evidence-based curricula and programs. We wish you a fruitful, educational, community-engaged, and evidence-based 2018.


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