Academic training

The following advice is aimed at existing clinical academic trainees who already have a JRCPTB ePortfolio account.

Academic trainees who are not currently on ePortfolio e.g. Clinical lecturers on pre 2007 clinical curricula, could have an ePortfolio account created for them to provide a method of recording their academic supervision and academic reviews in the ARCP system. They and their supervisors would also be able to benefit from the proposed developments for more junior academic trainees.

Who are the academic trainees?

Academic Clinical Fellows (ACFs) and Academic Clinical Lecturers (ACLs) are clearly in academic training but trainees who are doing a Research Fellowship e.g. out of programme from clinical training, should also be included in support mechanisms for the development of their academic competencies.

Academic supervisor / mentor

Each trainee physician has a named educational supervisor identified on their ePortfolio. The access rights for the educational supervisor are identical to the rights that an Academic supervisor / mentor require. A new academic supervisor role has recently been created within the e portfolio. Each academic trainee should from now onwards have an academic supervisor identified on their ePortfolio.

Academic training programme director(s)

Programme directors in the clinical specialties are given access to the ePortfolios of all their clinical trainees in order to review their progress against the ARCP decision aid(s) for their curriculum.

Each clinical academic trainee needs to have an annual ARCP which includes an academic component linked with their clinical ARCP. This requires a clinical academic or a group of clinical academics to lead this in each University / Deanery. In effect they will provide academic programme direction. The existing programme director role on the ePortfolio gives the appropriate level of access to a trainee's ePortfolio for these academics (as more than one person will be required for the ARCP review process).

List of academic competencies

Trainees in all specialties should be referring to the syllabus in the curriculum that is guiding their training when they set their personal development plan objectives.

All physician clinical trainees are expected to develop some academic competencies as defined in the core common competencies 'Ethical research' and 'Teaching' which have been included in all the medical curricula. Academic trainees are expected to achieve those plus additional competencies.

In the absence of a formal academic curriculum a list of academic competences has been created and inserted into the ‘curriculum' section of the ePortfolio as an academic checklist. The aim is for this to be referred to when setting personal development objectives. It is also possible to link evidence relevant to individual competences on the academic checklist in a similar way to the clinical curriculum records on the ePortfolio.

Personal development plan (PDP)

The existing PDP section of the ePortfolio is suitable for the inclusion of academic as well as clinical objectives. It is suitable for this combined use in its current format. Trainees are encouraged to record just one objective in each PDP entry. They should have a number of PDP entries with their current objectives including a plan on how they aim to achieve each of them and have them assessed.

All trainees are encouraged to keep the PDP up to date and review it before each appraisal or meeting with their supervisor.

Appraisals & meetings with academic supervisor

It is recommended that formal meetings should take place regularly with the academic supervisor and these should be recorded. The existing appraisal forms on the ePortfolio can be used in their current format to record academic supervision meetings.

An alternative meetings form is available for follow up or routine meetings and can be accessed via the summary overview screen on the progression section of the ePortfolio.

Trainees can act as the scribe on the ePortfolio for these meetings apart from when an end of attachment appraisal form is used.

Workplace-based assessments (WPBA)

The existing workplace assessment forms can be used where appropriate.

Some academic trainees have used the existing general DOPS form for assessments of their laboratory skills. Some of the feedback / assessment sections of the form are not relevant for a non clinical setting. The ‘Unable to assess' option should be chosen for those sections.

Similarly, multi source feedbacks (MSFs) have been performed using assessors from laboratory research teams in which the same comments apply as for the use of DOPS forms.

ePortfolio reflection

The reflection section of the ePortfolio is suitable in its current format for use by clinical academic trainees.

ePortfolio personal library

The memory provided for storage of items in the personal library is currently 80Mb. This may be filled quickly by an active researcher if they are not selective in what is included in the personal library. Many trainees use links to personal storage on an external website to circumvent this issue.

All trainees are advised to create subfolders in the personal library to organise its content.

The suggested sub-folders are:

  • JRCPTB communications
  • Deanery communications
  • MRCP office communications
  • Copies of personal publications and abstracts
  • Copies of audit reports and / or presentations
  • Scanned copies of other important documents that are not otherwise
  • in the e portfolio
  • Previous ARCP panel communications
  • Supervisor reports from previous years of training
  • Copies of summaries (usually annual) of
  • Teaching attendance
  • Acute take activity
  • Outpatient activity reports or logs
  • Patient Survey summary

Other subfolders can be created by the trainee to organise their material which can be linked to competencies in their curriculum record.

Academic supervisor report

All trainees require a supervisor report before their ARCP. The existing supervisor report on the ePortfolio contains a research section as well as clinical sections.

If an academic supervisor is producing just an academic report then this should concentrate on the research section of the report plus the relevant generic sections.

If the supervisor is providing both clinical and academic supervision then a combined report is recommended.

If there are separate arrangements for the educational supervision of clinical and academic training then it is recommended that there are separate supervisor reports for the ARCP.

ARCP forms

The ARCP form on physician trainees' ePortfolio incorporates the sections for academic trainees from the example form in the Gold Guide. The ARCP section of the ePortfolio is therefore already set up to record the outcome of any interim reviews or ARCPs which include an academic component.