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Can adherence to adult learning principles ensure personal and professional development among medical school faculty? Experiences from an Indian medical school

Author: 
Reem Rachel Abraham, Vinod Pallath, Ciraj A. M., Ramnarayan K. and Asha Kamath
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Introduction: Melaka Manipal Medical College (MMMC) Manipal Campus, offers Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) program in a twinning mode under the auspices of Manipal University, India. In the present study, the authors attempted to determine whether faculty members at MMMC perceive adult learning principles as a pathway for professional development. We were also interested in knowing whether any correlation existed between faculty perceptions of adult learning principles and professional development at three levels; individual, interpersonal and organizational levels. Methods: A questionnaire comprising items focusing on five adult learning principles (Active Participation, Relevant Learning, Safe and non-threatening Environment, Constructive Feedback, Previous Experiences) was designed. A second questionnaire focusing on professional development at three levels was also designed. Faculty members (n =42) were asked to reflect on the practices outlined in both these questionnaires on a 5 point LIkert scale. Results: Comparison of mean values of five adult learning principles revealed a high mean value for relevant learning followed by constructive feedback, previous experiences, safe environment and active participation. Correlation analysis revealed a strong correlation between active participation and three levels of professional development and also between constructive feedback and three levels of professional development. Conclusion: The present study intends to provide a framework of professional development which is centered on a few practices based on adult learning principles. This may be helpful for medical schools that lack infrastructure and precise proposals to facilitate faculty development.

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