n South African Journal of Higher Education - Quality assurance in undergraduate medical education : a guide for accreditation reviews

Volume 21, Issue 5
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



Quality assurance in medical education is a complex matter. Institutions and external critics of accreditation processes often question the objectivity of peer judgements. Members of accreditation panels similarly often feel at a loss for a lack of mechanisms to help them arrive at a collective assessment of the performance of an institution. In this study a measurement tool for the evaluation of medical education programmes was developed. Based on a literature study and participant observation a draft guide for accreditation visits was compiled, and used as data collection instrument in (individual and focus-group) interviews. The sample represented the three populations involved in the medical education accreditation process. The participants were positive about the value of the proposed guide. The findings indicated that a guide for accreditation reviews would render the accreditation process more objective and structured, and could start an effective developmental process in undergraduate medical education in South Africa. As the guide contains clear criteria (rubrics and scoring guide) for accreditation evaluations, no room is left for personal perspectives to bias the evaluations.

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