NHS Education for Scotland Logo

Scotland Deanery

Home of Medical and Dental Excellence

Monday, December 4, 2017

Thinking outside the box - help or hinder?

Claire MacRae gave her talk "Thinking outside the box: an effective way to challenge the status quo or just a way to over-challenge yourself?", at the Rogano Meeting (September 2017). This work is part of her SMERC funded project "Understanding, valuing and enhancing the role of clinicians who teach" as supervised by Dr Derek Jones (University of Edinburgh) and Dr Terese Stenfors-Hayes (Karolinska Institutet). 

Claire said:

"The problem addressed by my research is that clinical teachers report feeling unrecognised and undervalued by medical schools. We know that this issue is complex, multi-factorial and has been worsening over an extended period. Paradoxically, interventions designed to alleviate the problem may be making it worse.

We don’t know which of the numerous factors affecting the situation are having the biggest effect on the problem; which of these are within the power of medical schools to change or influence; and what the likely effects of any changes might be. It is important to investigate this because teachers who do not feel appreciated are likely to lack motivation to improve their teaching. Additionally, many clinical teachers do not have a formal contract with their medical school and could refuse to teach at all if the situation worsens.

I am taking a case-study approach to investigating this problem in three medical schools, two in the UK and one in Sweden. Using Critical Discourse Analysis and Activity Theory, I am analysing documents and semi-structured interviews with the aim of establishing the underlying causes of the problem in each organisation. I will then compare the three cases to explore the extent to which context is contributing to the problem."


Her talk  was well received from by the audience giving some useful insights for us all which was picked up on Twitter too. 


Good job Claire!



Return to all news