As undergraduate and graduate healthcare management education programs move to a competency based framework for curricula, one of a program’s hurdles is assessment of student achievement of those competencies. The basis for this assessment begins in the very building block of our curricula, the syllabus, which many faculty (and some lawyers) call “our contract with the student.” To that end our syllabi should be specific to the course topic, but also address the rest of the program and how this particular course fits into the bigger picture of the competency framework.
The buzz in health care management education is all competencies, all the time. Your program, whether at the undergraduate or graduate level, must be anchored in a competency based framework. The framework selected must be based on your program’s mission, vision, and values, your target students and the outcomes, i.e., where do you expect these students to go. Every meeting you attend will touch upon competencies and the dreaded assessments. Some may ask, “Why the big push?” Others may say, “What was wrong with the old fashioned way?”
As someone who has published three textbooks over the course of a decade, and has another edition of our most popular one in the works as we speak, I frequently am asked two questions: “How much do you earn in royalties?” And, “How can I get a textbook published?” If you think you are going to earn a bazillion dollars in royalties with a textbook, you will be disappointed. That is not the reason for heading down this publishing road. The idea of writing a book is exciting. The thought of your name emblazoned on every bookstore shelf and online distributor is heady stuff. However, I am here to tell you, it is hard work and not for the dabbler or faint of heart. Herewith, I share my top ten tips for publishing a textbook.
When we think about mass casualty events, we usually think about natural disasters, such as tornadoes, hurricanes, wildfires, and earthquakes. As noted in my blog on bioterrorism, we healthcare management educators tend not to dwell on or prepare for these and other disasters, such as chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and civil unrest. Living in Baltimore, Maryland, recent events have brought the matter home to our healthcare organizations in a way we have not seen since 1968. Peaceful marches and protests simmered in rage and boiled over into violence and fires. Currently, all the players—politicians, gang leaders, pastors, and community members are struggling to pull together to keep our beloved city calm and to support community members who are suffering from mental health issues associated with this tumult. As it became evident that mass casualties could occur, local hospitals were put on alert to receive injured protestors and police officers. But were they prepared?
Last month, I talked about job searches from the other side of the desk, that of the candidate and how to help students avoid going into a house of horrors. In this post, I will be talking about something we don’t read a lot about in healthcare settings, but I anticipate we will be hearing more, that is employer surveillance and monitoring of employees.
As spring and graduation approach, the focus for many of us in academia is on helping students to prepare for their careers and finding a new job. Two years ago, I blogged about employability. In that post, I took the perspective of the needs of the employer and what they are looking for in candidates. In this post, I will be talking about job searches from the other side of the desk, that of the candidate and how to help your students avoid going into a house of horrors.
With the return of Ebola to center stage in world health and the much heralded and anticipated start of vaccine trials for this disease in West Africa, it is easy to forget old diseases and debates. Vaccinations created by man, not by natural disease processes, have historically engendered controversy. According to Link (2005, p. 38), "vaccines are counterintuitive. What sense does it make to inject a well baby with a potent, biologically active vaccine that contains elements of the very disease it is supposed to prevent?"
Ask a faculty member about how the customers are doing in her course and you are likely to receive the following responses: confusion, disbelief, and annoyance. Much like waving a red flag at a bull, calling students customers in front of faculty can induce raised voices and anger. Often when this term is used, faculty members will expound on student entitlement and demands for unearned grades. In their minds, student expectations have outstripped reality in higher education. Sometimes it can be difficult to step back and recall our own educational choices.
Many years ago in the late 1970's when I was an intravenous (IV) therapist at an upstate New York academic health center, a patient who worked with rabies virus in the New York State Laboratory across the street was admitted through the Emergency Department. The admitting resident physician, who was a friend, told us the patient presented with seizures, photophobia, and "foaming at the mouth." However, because the patient had been vaccinated against rabies, the physician felt there was "no way" the patient could have the disease. I disagreed.
Four years ago, I posted a blog asking the question, "Are health care professionals prepared for disasters?" and closed with the following: