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Using Competency-Based Assessments to Coach Professional Development in Pre-Clerkship Trainees

August 12 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Register in advance for this meeting:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. If you are unable to attend the event, it will be recorded and stored on our Workshop Recordings page.


Health professionals require skills and attitudes beyond medical knowledge and pre-clerkship faculty play an early role in developing these attributes in students. However, because of the heavy focus on medical knowledge during pre-clerkship training, programs often struggle to incorporate experiences and assessments that prepare students for all aspects of clinical work. One approach to addressing this issue is to incorporate competency-based assessment schemes into the pre-clerkship curriculum that are compatible with established small group learning modalities. While maintaining the importance of medical knowledge, competency-based assessment strategies allow a more holistic view of student development and can be used to coach learners in a variety of domains, such as practice-based learning and improvement, systems-based practice, interpersonal skills and communication, and professionalism. They also provide students with rich feedback across all aspects of their performance and establish a roadmap that encourages learner development and sustainability.

This interactive focus session will provide practical information and a framework that participants can use to implement milestone-based assessment strategies that include multiple competency domains at their institutions. After completing this focus session, participants will be able to:

  1. Describe qualitative formats of assessment and how they can be used to equip students with a diverse set of competencies during pre-clerkship medical education.
  2. Design different team-based learning environments that can be used to observe student behavior.
  3. Discuss how feedback from these sessions can be used to identify previously undetected competency challenges and allow opportunities for coaching and remediation before students enter the clinical workplace.
  4. Develop standardized milestone-based competency language for assessing student performance.

Neil Osheroff, PhD

Dr. Osheroff received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Northwestern University and was a Helen Hay Whitney Foundation Fellow at the Stanford University School of Medicine. He is currently a Professor of Biochemistry and Medicine at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and holds the John G. Coniglio Chair in Biochemistry. Dr. Osheroff directs a research laboratory that has made seminal contributions to our understanding of how enzymes, known as topoisomerases function, regulate the topological state of DNA and serve as targets for several widely prescribed anticancer and antibacterial drugs. He also directs the School of Medicine Academy for Excellence in Education and chairs the Master Science Teacher group.

Dr. Osheroff has received awards for mentoring, teaching, curricular design, educational leadership and service, and promoting diversity and inclusion. He was inducted as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2018 and received the IAMSE Distinguished Career Award for Excellence in Teaching and Educational Scholarship in 2019. He has published over 260 papers and has presented more than 300 scientific and educational talks in 32 different countries. (Read more about Dr. Osheroff)