Practice-based small group learning programs: systematic review.
To identify the format, content, and effects of practice-based small group learning (PBSGL) programs involving FPs.
The Ovid MEDLINE, EMBASE, and ERIC databases were searched from inception to the second week of November 2011, yielding 99 articles.
Articles were included in the analysis if they described the format or content of or evaluated PBSGL programs among FPs. Thirteen articles were included in the analysis.
Two main PBSGL formats exist. The first is self-directed learning, which includes review and discussion of troubling or challenging patient cases. The contents of such programs vary with different teaching styles. The second format targets specific problems from practice to improve certain knowledge or skills or implement new guidelines by using patient cases to stimulate discussion of the selected topic. Both formats are similar in their ultimate goal, equally important, and well accepted by learners and facilitators. Evaluations of learners' perceptions and learning outcomes indicate that PBSGL constitutes a feasible and effective method of professional development.
Current evidence suggests that PBSGL is a promising method of continuing professional development for FPs. Such programs can be adapted according to learning needs. Future studies that focus on the changes in practice effected by PBSGL will strengthen the evidence for this form of learning and motivate physicians and institutions to adopt it.
Department of Family and Community Medicine at University of Toronto in Ontario.
SourceCanadian family physician Médecin de famille canadien 58:6 2012 Jun pg 637-42, e310-6
MeSHEducation, Medical, Continuing
Pub Type(s)Journal Article