Inquiry for Reflective Educators

Donald Schön addressed metacognitive engagement as reflective practice, that is, reflection-in and reflection-on action or performance. Plack & Santasier (2004) expanded this to include reflection-for action, that is to incorporate reflection in self-assessment, evaluation and planning for future teaching or learning experiences. These dimensions of reflective practice (Clouder, 2000) involve a deliberate, critical awareness as individuals and collectives of practitioners.

Metacognitive Engagement in Teaching

Reflection In, On and For...aka BDA

Schön's framework is aligned with the BDA (Before, During, After) framework used in the Clinical Reasoning Course (CRC) at the UA CoM as well as for bedside teaching.  Reflective educators are metacognitively engaged in planning and implementation of the teaching/learning experience. They reflect on teaching with the aim of improving practice.  

Thus, reflective educators might ask themselves:

  • What are my objectives as an instructor in a specific situation, with a given student and overall?

  • How can convey or clarify learning objectives for the student?

  • What are the educational and practice-related demands on the learner?

  • How can I assist the learner in a strategic ways to meet those demands?

  • Does the environment or learning situation impose particular constraints that might hinder students from learning?

  • How can I assist students in recognizing, minimizing or overcoming challenges or constraints?

  • ​Which tools would best guide students in learning medical knowledge and clinical skills?

  • What funds of knowledge (e.g., language, medical knowledge, teaching skills, etc.) do I have that are most relevant to this learning situation and student?​

Suggested Reading

There are many books, poems, and other articles written by phsyicians, nurses and patients about the human aspects of clinical experiences. These readings can help medical educators on reflecting about how they can discuss reflection on the humanity in medical practice as well as getting in the habit of contemplating medicine from a patient's perspective. The Reading List below, in Related Resources, is a starter list. Please help yourself and share it, and your own ideas for a reflective reading list, with your students.  >> Reading List