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Teaching and assessing the CanMEDS Framework

What Works: An inventory of best practices

Teaching how to use a defibrillator

Looking for new ways to teach and assess CanMEDS competencies? The CanMEDS What Works inventory contains more than a hundred peer-reviewed CanMEDS best practices for program directors, residents and faculty. This inventory is a way for medical educators to share their great ideas.

A CanMEDS best practice abstract is a short summary of strategies and tools for teaching and assessing CanMEDS physician competencies. The inventory is a source of fresh ideas and invaluable tools for medical educators and clinicians.

How to use the What Works inventory

All abstracts are posted in the language in which they were submitted. They are sorted by CanMEDS Role and by category. Please acknowledge the source when adapting or adopting these best practices.

Search the What Works inventory for a CanMEDS best practice

Abstracts by Role

Medical Expert

  1. A global rating of operative microscopic surgical skills (GROMSS) for otolaryngology- Head & Neck Surgery residents: a pilot study
  2. Effective use of simulation in an obstetrical curriculum
  3. Integrated simulation for teaching and assessment of multiple skills in knee arthrocentesis
  4. La mise en place d’un programme pour l’enseignement de l’échographie dirigée aux résidents : présentation d’une solution d’enseignement combinant enseignement didactique, pratique et évaluation de la compétence
  5. Web-based directed collaborative self-study modules to enhance clinical decision-making skills in general paediatrics
  6. Resident participation in an Internet-based collaborative teaching tool (Google Docs™)
  7. Promoting reflective practice: tools for individualizing resident training
  8. Foundation concepts: Resident-led series on common clinical presentations for medical students
  9. Writing a pulmonary function test (PFT) report: A novel objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) station to assess the Communicator Role
  10. Teaching chest computed tomography (CT) interpretation to respirology residents: Experience using an objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) style format as a teaching method
  11. Teaching clinical skill assessment of normal child development to medical students: An integrated, evidence-based approach
  12. Case-based learning in pediatric rheumatology: An effective method for teaching the Medical Expert Role
  13. Teaching the basics of airway management via a multi-faceted, interdisciplinary course
  14. The impact of a new structured surgical skill training model for cultivating surgical competency
  15. The effect of a resident acute care resuscitation training program on 2nd year pediatric residents' confidence in “code blue” situations

Communicator

  1. Teaching the intangibles: How to manage an emergency department
  2. Understanding the patient’s story: A theatre approach to the education of residents
  3. Teaching the "art" of code status discussions: A 2-part module
  4. Using a reflective exercise during orientation to discuss issues of supervision, communication and ideal patient safety practices
  5. Mentorship enterprise: The future frontier
  6. A tool to learn competencies in neonatal ethics: The portfolio
  7. The development of a simulation-enhanced workshop for teaching challenging communication skills to paediatric residents
  8. Envisioning a successful simulation interprofessional education model partnering microbiology residents and microbiology medical laboratory technologist trainees
  9. Integrated simulation for teaching and assessment of multiple skills in knee arthrocentesis
  10. Interprofessional Simulation to Improve Internal Medicine Resident Training
  11. Learning (together) with cases: A story of interprofessional educational collaboration
  12. Grassroots advocacy in subspecialty fellowships: developing curriculum in global health
  13. Coaching communication using simulated encounters (CCSE): an educational research study with medical residents
  14. Incorporating communications skills training in general surgery training programs
  15. Improving the written communication skills of specialists-an overlooked core competency
  16. A program for enhancing the communication skills of neurology residents
  17. Overview of communication skills training program for neurology residents
  18. Ethics in the neonatal-perinatal medicine residency program at the University of Ottawa: Implementation of a competency-based residency education program
  19. Foundation concepts: Resident-led series on common clinical presentations for medical students
  20. Bringing the CanMEDS Communicator Role to "life" through web based e-learning
  21. The CanMEDS objective structured clinical examination (OSCE): Evaluating outside of the box - an example from diagnostic radiology
  22. Using standardized family members to teach communication skills and ethical principles to critical care trainees
  23. Teaching residents to evaluate and teach (TREaT) curriculum: Piloting a resident-as-teacher program
  24. Transversal competencies: The global approach at la Faculté de médecine de l’Université Laval
  25. An interprofessional education/collaboration (IPE/C) program in maternity care: Development, implementation, evaluation and adaptability
  26. Teaching interprofessional communication and conflict management (CCM) skill
  27. Writing a pulmonary function test (PFT) report: A novel objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) station to assess the Communicator Role
  28. La supervision par observation directe au département de médecine d’urgence
  29. Communication skills workshop for residency training program
  30. Transitioning to competency-based education for EEG, epilepsy and clinical neurophysiology residency rotations

Collaborator

  1. Mentorship enterprise: The future frontier
  2. A team approach to identifying residents in need, diagnosing their needs and designing appropriate interventions
  3. Envisioning a successful simulation interprofessional education model partnering microbiology residents and microbiology medical laboratory technologist trainees
  4. Interprofessional Simulation to Improve Internal Medicine Resident Training
  5. Learning (together) with cases: A story of interprofessional educational collaboration
  6. Web-based directed collaborative self-study modules to enhance clinical decision-making skills in general paediatrics
  7. Grassroots advocacy in subspecialty fellowships: developing curriculum in global health
  8. Response to intimate partner violence: a multi/inter-disciplinary workshop for professional students in the faculty of health sciences and the faculty of law
  9. Educating surgical specialty residents for leadership and advocacy in Canadian health care reform
  10. Interprofessional collaboration workshops: How residents learn about CanMEDS Collaborator Role in practising teams
  11. Teaching conflict resolution skills through a curriculum web initiative
  12. Teaching residents to evaluate and teach (TREaT) curriculum: Piloting a resident-as-teacher program
  13. Transversal competencies: The global approach at la Faculté de médecine de l’Université Laval
  14. An interprofessional education/collaboration (IPE/C) program in maternity care: Development, implementation, evaluation and adaptability
  15. Teaching interprofessional communication and conflict management (CCM) skill
  16. La supervision par observation directe au département de médecine d’urgence
  17. The Endocrine Advocacy Project
  18. Teaching ethics to critical care trainees: the University of Toronto experience
  19. Teaching the basics of airway management via a multi-faceted, interdisciplinary course

Professional

  1. Building resident resilience: Using mindfulness, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and solution-focused therapy to teach residents stress management skills
  2. Using a reflective exercise during orientation to discuss issues of supervision, communication and ideal patient safety practices
  3. Postgraduate medical education in the United Arab Emirates: Guidelines on a code of ethics and professional conduct for trainees
  4. Mentorship enterprise: The future frontier
  5. A tool to learn competencies in neonatal ethics: The portfolio
  6. Envisioning a successful simulation interprofessional education model partnering microbiology residents and microbiology medical laboratory technologist trainees
  7. Interprofessional Simulation to Improve Internal Medicine Resident Training
  8. Learning (together) with cases: A story of interprofessional educational collaboration
  9. Genetics in medicine: An ethics curriculum
  10. Grassroots advocacy in subspecialty fellowships: developing curriculum in global health
  11. "Fellows clinic": the CanMEDS Roles in action
  12. Reflection as a Method to Teach and Evaluate the Professional Role
  13. Ethics in the neonatal-perinatal medicine residency program at the University of Ottawa: Implementation of a competency-based residency education program
  14. Educating surgical specialty residents for leadership and advocacy in Canadian health care reform
  15. Interprofessional collaboration workshops: How residents learn about CanMEDS Collaborator Role in practising teams
  16. The CanMEDS objective structured clinical examination (OSCE): Evaluating outside of the box - an example from diagnostic radiology
  17. Using standardized family members to teach communication skills and ethical principles to critical care trainees
  18. Managing energy: Incorporating the science of stamina into a residency curriculum
  19. Transversal competencies: The global approach at la Faculté de médecine de l’Université Laval
  20. An interprofessional education/collaboration (IPE/C) program in maternity care: Development, implementation, evaluation and adaptability
  21. Teaching interprofessional communication and conflict management (CCM) skill
  22. Teaching ethics to critical care trainees: the University of Toronto experience
  23. Teaching faculty to facilitate team-based health care professionalism workshop in the team-based learning style
  24. Transitioning to competency-based education for EEG, epilepsy and clinical neurophysiology residency rotations

CanMEDS General

  1. Qualitative feedback and the narrative ITER in Emergency Medicine
  2. The CanMEDS observer program for direct clinical observation
  3. Creating a national resource of medical imaging education: Research to practice
  4. Assessing the teachable moment
  5. What does competent performance look like? A problem-based redefinition of competence
  6. Implementation of a portfolio-based evaluation process for residents in community medicine
  7. La mise en place d’un programme pour l’enseignement de l’échographie dirigée aux résidents : présentation d’une solution d’enseignement combinant enseignement didactique, pratique et évaluation de la compétence
  8. Collaborative faculty development
  9. Simulation for remote and distributed teaching, training and assessment
  10. Encounter cards: A tool for competency based assessment in a multi-learner, multi-faculty rotation
  11. A Needs Assessment for a CanMeds-Based Curriculum in Ambulatory Care for Internal Medicine Residents in Canada
  12. Co-operative learning as an instructional strategy in undergraduate medical education
  13. PDA activity tracking includes building a portfolio of learning experiences
  14. Assessing the CanMEDS Roles in neonatal-perinatal medicine using the objective structured clinical examination (OSCE)
  15. Cooperative group simulations for teaching/learning CanMEDS Roles: supporting example from a collaboration exercise
  16. Multi-dimensional evaluation of an integrated, intensive, multispecialties "introduction to core competencies" rotation
  17. Community health initiative by university students (CHIUS) is service-learning model for student driven health initiatives that responds to the needs of marginalized communities
  18. Development of a web-based internal medicine residency curriculum (e-Res) using principles of electronic academic detailing
  19. Chief residents as role models for CanMEDS - the Canadian Pediatrics Chief Resident Conference
  20. A Daily Encounter Card to Assess Undergraduate Emergency Medicine Trainees
  21. Tracking Clinical Exposure Through the Customized ZoomEndo Software
  22. "RAPID" Mnemonic for Managing Patients in the Emergency Department - An Educational Tool
  23. An integrated objective scoring system to assess CanMEDS Roles, skills and knowledge during crisis simulation
  24. A novel method of evaluating the CanMEDS Roles on a daily basis
  25. The chief resident as a role model for CanMEDS: A surgery chief resident workshop
  26. The postgraduate curriculum development project of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists, Faculty of Radiation Oncology
  27. How to involve your residents in developing CanMEDS initiatives: An innovative CanMEDS workshop to identify resident-driven priorities
  28. A simple portfolio to learn reflective practice, CanMEDS roles, and how to meet professional challenges
  29. Novel use of Google sites to create a distributed toolkit for a hematopathology residency training program in Canada
  30. Morning Report Blog: A web resource to complement case-based teaching
  31. Residents learning CanMEDS competencies through a curriculum web initiative
  32. Development and implementation of a competency-based curriculum in orthopaedic surgery
  33. Enhancing residents' competence in end-of-life care: Educational strategies informed by residents' perceived competence and priorities for learning
  34. Leadership skills for neonatal fellows
  35. The program CanMEDS portfolio: A high-impact tool for your residency program
  36. Tool to promote CanMEDS teaching and evaluation in Laboratory Medicine
  37. A novel approach to case presentations in academic Emergency Medicine
  38. Effective audiovisual presentation: A critical appraisal of electronic presentation software and suggestions for its appropriate use in residency teaching
  39. Trainee and faculty perspectives on the use of a CanMEDS portfolio in a pediatric fellowship program
  40. Residents learning CanMEDS competencies through a curriculum web initiative
  41. A checklist for evaluating CanMEDS Roles in laboratory medicine/anatomic pathology: Adaptation for clinical specialties without direct patient care roles
  42. Extending the interview to all medical school applicants: Computer-based assessment for sampling personal characteristics (CASPer)
  43. Practical application of educational concepts in medical teaching
  44. The CanMEDS portfolio: A useful tool for documentation and evaluation of CanMEDS activities for residents – an example from diagnostic radiology
  45. Les CanMEDS et la globalization : Expérience libanaise d’une année
  46. The academic half-day redesigned: A learner centered and systems-based curriculum
  47. Teaching in medical education: Developing a radiological skill set for Canadian medical graduates and trainees
  48. Introduction and assessment of the annual anatomy review course for Obstetrics and Gynaecology residency program at the University of Ottawa
  49. Teaching the teachers: An intervention designed to provide residents with the tools to teach non–Medical Expert CanMEDS Roles to more junior trainees

Abstracts by Category

Curriculum

  1. Creating a national resource of medical imaging education: Research to practice
  2. Navigating the wellness-performance interface for collaborative remediation planning
  3. Postgraduate medical education in the United Arab Emirates: Guidelines on a code of ethics and professional conduct for trainees
  4. What does competent performance look like? A problem-based redefinition of competence
  5. A team approach to identifying residents in need, diagnosing their needs and designing appropriate interventions
  6. Implementation of a portfolio-based evaluation process for residents in community medicine
  7. Envisioning a successful simulation interprofessional education model partnering microbiology residents and microbiology medical laboratory technologist trainees
  8. La mise en place d’un programme pour l’enseignement de l’échographie dirigée aux résidents : présentation d’une solution d’enseignement combinant enseignement didactique, pratique et évaluation de la compétence
  9. Learning (together) with cases: A story of interprofessional educational collaboration
  10. Resident participation in an Internet-based collaborative teaching tool (Google Docs™)
  11. Simulation for remote and distributed teaching, training and assessment
  12. Genetics in medicine: An ethics curriculum
  13. Grassroots advocacy in subspecialty fellowships: developing curriculum in global health
  14. A Needs Assessment for a CanMeds-Based Curriculum in Ambulatory Care for Internal Medicine Residents in Canada
  15. Co-operative learning as an instructional strategy in undergraduate medical education
  16. Multi-dimensional evaluation of an integrated, intensive, multispecialties "introduction to core competencies" rotation
  17. Development of a web-based internal medicine residency curriculum (e-Res) using principles of electronic academic detailing
  18. Using portfolios in Anesthesiology
  19. Development of a practice management curriculum for General Surgery
  20. Ethics in the neonatal-perinatal medicine residency program at the University of Ottawa: Implementation of a competency-based residency education program
  21. The chief resident as a role model for CanMEDS: A surgery chief resident workshop
  22. The postgraduate curriculum development project of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists, Faculty of Radiation Oncology
  23. Bringing the CanMEDS Communicator Role to "life" through web based e- learning
  24. Resident as Learner and Teacher (RALT): A comprehensive web based e-learning module that contributes to teaching of the Scholar Role
  25. Residents as leaders: An innovative curriculum for the development of leadership skills in residency
  26. Teaching conflict resolution skills through a curriculum web initiative
  27. Residents learning CanMEDS competencies through a curriculum web initiative
  28. Development and implementation of a competency-based curriculum in orthopaedic surgery
  29. Enhancing residents' competence in end-of-life care: Educational strategies informed by residents' perceived competence and priorities for learning
  30. The program CanMEDS portfolio: A high-impact tool for your residency program
  31. Teaching residents to evaluate and teach (TREaT) curriculum: Piloting a resident-as-teacher program
  32. Transversal competencies: The global approach at la Faculté de médecine de l’Université Laval
  33. Residents learning CanMEDS competencies through a curriculum web initiative
  34. CanMEDS Scholar: Developing a progressive residents-as-teachers training program that is appropriate to residents’ level of experience
  35. An interprofessional education/collaboration (IPE/C) program in maternity care: Development, implementation, evaluation and adaptability
  36. Teaching interprofessional communication and conflict management (CCM) skill
  37. Practical application of educational concepts in medical teaching
  38. The academic half-day redesigned: A learner centered and systems-based curriculum
  39. Introduction of a health advocacy module into an emergency curriculum
  40. Teaching faculty to facilitate team-based health care professionalism workshop in the team-based learning style
  41. Teaching in medical education: Developing a radiological skill set for Canadian medical graduates and trainees

Teaching Tool/Method

  1. Creating a national resource of medical imaging education: Research to practice
  2. Teaching the intangibles: How to manage an emergency department
  3. Understanding the patient’s story: A theatre approach to the education of residents
  4. Teaching the "art" of code status discussions: A 2-part module
  5. Building resident resilience: Using mindfulness, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and solution-focused therapy to teach residents stress management skills
  6. Using a reflective exercise during orientation to discuss issues of supervision, communication and ideal patient safety practices
  7. Mentorship enterprise: The future frontier
  8. A tool to learn competencies in neonatal ethics: The portfolio
  9. The development of a simulation-enhanced workshop for teaching challenging communication skills to paediatric residents
  10. Effective use of simulation in an obstetrical curriculum
  11. Integrated simulation for teaching and assessment of multiple skills in knee arthrocentesis
  12. Interprofessional Simulation to Improve Internal Medicine Resident Training
  13. Web-based directed collaborative self-study modules to enhance clinical decision-making skills in general paediatrics
  14. Collaborative faculty development
  15. Co-operative learning as an instructional strategy in undergraduate medical education
  16. Response to intimate partner violence: a multi/inter-disciplinary workshop for professional students in the faculty of health sciences and the faculty of law
  17. PDA activity tracking includes building a portfolio of learning experiences
  18. Incorporating communications skills training in general surgery training programs
  19. Overview of communication skills training program for neurology residents
  20. A program for enhancing the communication skills of neurology residents
  21. Community health initiative by university students (CHIUS) is service learning model for student driven health initiatives that responds to the needs of marginalized communities
  22. "Fellows clinic": the CanMEDS Roles in action
  23. Chief residents as role models for CanMEDS - the Canadian Pediatrics Chief Resident Conference
  24. Cooperative group simulations for teaching/learning CanMEDS Roles: supporting example from a collaboration exercise
  25. Promoting reflective practice: tools for individualizing resident training
  26. Development of a practice management curriculum for General Surgery
  27. Tracking Clinical Exposure Through the Customized ZoomEndo Software
  28. "RAPID" Mnemonic for Managing Patients in the Emergency Department - An Educational Tool
  29. How to involve your residents in developing CanMEDS initiatives: An innovative CanMEDS workshop to identify resident-driven priorities
  30. A simple portfolio to learn reflective practice, CanMEDS roles, and how to meet professional challenges
  31. Teaching administrative medicine to residents: Development and implementation of a physician manager curriculum
  32. Educating surgical specialty residents for leadership and advocacy in Canadian health care reform
  33. Interprofessional collaboration workshops: How residents learn about CanMEDS Collaborator Role in practising teams
  34. Foundation concepts: Resident-led series on common clinical presentations for medical students
  35. Novel use of Google sites to create a distributed toolkit for a hematopathology residency training program in Canada
  36. Morning Report Blog: A web resource to complement case-based teaching
  37. Leadership skills for neonatal fellows
  38. Using standardized family members to teach communication skills and ethical principles to critical care trainees
  39. Development of a Manager rotation for senior subspecialty residents in Developmental Pediatrics
  40. Tool to promote CanMEDS teaching and evaluation in Laboratory Medicine
  41. A novel approach to case presentations in academic Emergency Medicine
  42. Effective audiovisual presentation: A critical appraisal of electronic presentation software and suggestions for its appropriate use in residency teaching
  43. The CanMEDS portfolio: A useful tool for documentation and evaluation of CanMEDS activities for residents – an example from diagnostic radiology
  44. The impact of a new structured surgical skill training model for cultivating surgical competency
  45. Teaching chest computed tomography (CT) interpretation to respirology residents: Experience using an objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) style format as a teaching method
  46. The academic half-day redesigned: A learner centered and systems-based curriculum
  47. Teaching clinical skill assessment of normal child development to medical students: An integrated, evidence-based approach
  48. The Endocrine Advocacy Project
  49. Case-based learning in pediatric rheumatology: An effective method for teaching the Medical Expert Role
  50. Teaching in medical education: Developing a radiological skill set for Canadian medical graduates and trainees
  51. Teaching ethics to critical care trainees: the University of Toronto experience
  52. The effect of a resident acute care resuscitation training program on 2nd year pediatric residents' confidence in “code blue” situations
  53. Teaching the teachers: An intervention designed to provide residents with the tools to teach non–Medical Expert CanMEDS Roles to more junior trainees
  54. Teaching faculty to facilitate team-based health care professionalism workshop in the team-based learning style
  55. Teaching the basics of airway management via a multi-faceted, interdisciplinary course
  56. Communication skills workshop for residency training program
  57. Teaching the CanMEDS role of Health Advocate: A modular format easily applied to any residency program

Assessment Tool/Method

  1. Qualitative feedback and the narrative ITER in Emergency Medicine
  2. The CanMEDS observer program for direct clinical observation
  3. A tool to learn competencies in neonatal ethics: The portfolio
  4. Assessing the teachable moment
  5. Implementation of a portfolio-based evaluation process for residents in community medicine
  6. A global rating of operative microscopic surgical skills (GROMSS) for otolaryngology- Head & Neck Surgery residents: a pilot study
  7. Integrated simulation for teaching and assessment of multiple skills in knee arthrocentesis
  8. Encounter cards: A tool for competency based assessment in a multi-learner, multi-faculty rotation
  9. Coaching communication using simulated encounters (CCSE): an educational research study with medical residents
  10. Assessing the CanMEDS Roles in neonatal-perinatal medicine using the objective structured clinical examination (OSCE)
  11. Improving the written communication skills of specialists - an overlooked core competency
  12. Using portfolios in Anesthesiology
  13. A Daily Encounter Card to Assess Undergraduate Emergency Medicine Trainees
  14. Reflection as a Method to Teach and Evaluate the Professional Role
  15. Tracking Clinical Exposure Through the Customized ZoomEndo Software
  16. An integrated objective scoring system to assess CanMEDS Roles, skills and knowledge during crisis simulation
  17. A novel method of evaluating the CanMEDS Roles on a daily basis
  18. Residents learning CanMEDS competencies through a curriculum web initiative
  19. The CanMEDS objective structured clinical examination (OSCE): Evaluating outside of the box - an example from diagnostic radiology
  20. Trainee and faculty perspectives on the use of a CanMEDS portfolio in a pediatric fellowship program
  21. A checklist for evaluating CanMEDS Roles in laboratory medicine/anatomic pathology: Adaptation for clinical specialties without direct patient care roles
  22. Extending the interview to all medical school applicants: Computer-based assessment for sampling personal characteristics (CASPer)
  23. Writing a pulmonary function test (PFT) report: A novel objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) station to assess the Communicator Role
  24. Les CanMEDS et la globalization : Expérience libanaise d’une année
  25. La supervision par observation directe au département de médecine d’urgence
  26. The CanMEDS portfolio: A useful tool for documentation and evaluation of CanMEDS activities for residents – an example from diagnostic radiology
  27. Case-based learning in pediatric rheumatology: An effective method for teaching the Medical Expert Role
  28. Introduction and assessment of the annual anatomy review course for Obstetrics and Gynaecology residency program at the University of Ottawa
  29. Transitioning to competency-based education for EEG, epilepsy and clinical neurophysiology residency rotations

Share "What Works" in your program

The Royal College welcomes your contribution to the What Works Inventory. By sharing your program's CanMEDS best practice, you and your team will:

  • be peer-reviewed and published on the CanMEDS website,
  • be recognized by your peers and community, and
  • contribute to progress in medical education and clinical care.

Submit your CanMEDS best practice