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Training of Health Professions Educators in the 21st Century

23 Jan 2019

In the face of technological advancement and Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR 4.0), the education of healthcare professionals requires innovative approaches for teaching and learning. The Health Professions Education programme as offered by the International Medical University, Kuala Lumpur, is designed to fulfil the needs of the 21st century health professional teacher. Health professional teachers are professionals that have taken on roles as faculty teachers, administrators, curriculum developers, assessors, leaders and researchers in healthcare training. As students of the postgraduate certificate and diploma courses in health professions education, educators have opportunities to develop an in depth understanding of educational theories, principles and values underpinning contemporary curriculum, learning activities and assessment. The Master’s degree in health professions education fosters research capability in educators, culminating in scholarly activities such educational action research. The Masters in Health Professions Education results in the formal output of a dissertation. The programme equips educators with enhanced knowledge and skills to pursue career opportunities in health professions education and carry out research for further development. The IMU has specially designed this programme to meet the needs of health professions educators in the region. IMU’s Pro Vice Chancellor of Education , Prof Vishna Devi Nadarajah, underpins the need for teachers in medical, dental , pharmacy and in health sciences programmes to be scholars of educational theories and frameworks, skilled at teaching and assessments and continuously enhancing programme standards to meet current and future demands of healthcare training, She adds that it is the responsibility of the institutions to ensure that learning and assessments methods are continuously benchmarked to international best practices , and it is the educators that shape the learning environment for their students.

The programme is offered as a mixed-mode including both course work and research training, yielding a dissertation at the end of the programme. It is possible to pursue the programme in both full-time and part-time mode. The flexibility of the training is rendered by the weekend on campus classes as well as online distance learning, which helps working adults to have a comfortable journey through the course without interfering with their regular professional work.

A unique feature of the programme is that it is offered by national and international faculty. IMU leverages on its own expertise in undergraduate medical and health professional educations as well as it international partnerships to ensure that educators enrolled in this course are taught by both qualified faculties who are able to deliver the course based on their own rich experiences. Both our IMU and international faculty include experts who are directors of institutes, deans of medical schools and editors of high impact journals.Master of Health Professions Education at IMU IMU’s extensive e-learning portal is available to all students of the programme. Through the portal they can retrieve and study the course materials at their own pace and time. Face to face sessions include seminars, workshops, flipped classroom sessions, journal clubs and case based learning sessions. Adult learning principles are employed all throughout the training. On site sessions are conducted on Saturdays and Sundays at the Bukit Jalil IMU Campus, which is strategically located nearby both Sri Petaling and Bukit Jalil LRT stations. The admissions policy enables recruitment of students from diverse backgrounds with various experiences. This brings in varied talents and experiences to the programme, which fosters both an excellent learning culture and opportunities for cooperative learning with extensive peer support. The nature of the training programme also enables the development of various skills, namely communication, information retrieval and management, professional and interpersonal along with improvement in their ability to give and receive feedback.

What Our Student Say About the Programme
Sharon Chan is a student of Masters in Health Professions Education programme at IMU “The PGHPE programme has added meaning to my career as an educator. Having taught pre university programmes for many years, I am now able to apply what I learnt in PGHPE in my classroom. Being a Senior Lecturer in the Foundation in Science programme in IMU which aims to prepare students for their tertiary education in medical, pharmacy and health sciences programmes, the Health Professions Education has enabled me to teach in a more focused manner in preparing my students for their tertiary studies in health sciences. From the preparation of the curriculum, to the teaching and learning activities to assessments, the PGHPE has prepared me well.” -Sharon Chan Min Hui, MHPE Student.

The postgraduate certificate and diploma programmes are Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) accredited Level 7 while the Masters is provisionally accredited and is in the process of full accreditation. Being a 6* University under the SETARA rating in Malaysia for outstanding achievements, the programmes are periodically reviewed and restructured, keeping in lines with the global standard and need of the hour.

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