Measuring the effectiveness of faculty mentoring relationships

Acad Med. 2005 Jan;80(1):66-71. doi: 10.1097/00001888-200501000-00017.


"Mentor" is a term widely used in academic medicine but for which there is no consensus on an operational definition. Further, criteria are rarely reported for evaluating the effectiveness of mentoring. This article presents the work of an Ad Hoc Faculty Mentoring Committee whose tasks were to define "mentorship," specify concrete characteristics and responsibilities of mentors that are measurable, and develop new tools to evaluate the effectiveness of the mentoring relationship. The committee developed two tools: the Mentorship Profile Questionnaire, which describes the characteristics and outcome measures of the mentoring relationship from the perspective of the mentee, and the Mentorship Effectiveness Scale, a 12-item six-point agree-disagree-format Likert-type rating scale, which evaluates 12 behavioral characteristics of the mentor. These instruments are explained and copies are provided. Psychometric issues, including the importance of content-related validity evidence, response bias due to acquiescence and halo effects, and limitations on collecting reliability evidence, are examined in the context of the mentor-mentee relationship. Directions for future research are suggested.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Employee Performance Appraisal
  • Faculty, Medical / standards*
  • Humans
  • Interprofessional Relations*
  • Mentors / psychology*
  • Professional Role
  • Psychometrics / instrumentation
  • Social Responsibility
  • Surveys and Questionnaires