Promoting academic excellence through leadership development at the University of Washington: the Teaching Scholars Program

Acad Med. 2006 Nov;81(11):979-83. doi: 10.1097/01.ACM.0000242584.11488.4e.


The University of Washington Teaching Scholars Program (TSP) was established in 1995 to prepare faculty for local and national leadership and promote academic excellence by fostering a community of educational leaders to innovate, enliven, and enrich the environment for teaching and learning at the University of Washington (UW). Faculty in the Department of Medical Education and Biomedical Informatics designed and continue to implement the program. Qualified individuals from the UW Health Sciences Professional Schools and foreign scholars who are studying at the UW are eligible to apply for acceptance into the program. To date, 109 faculty and fellows have participated in the program, the majority of whom have been physicians. The program is committed to interprofessional education and seeks to diversify its participants. The curriculum is developed collaboratively with each cohort and comprises topics central to medical education and an emergent set of topics related to the specific interests and teaching responsibilities of the participating scholars. Core sessions cover the history of health professions education, learning theories, educational research methods, assessment, curriculum development, instructional methods, professionalism, and leadership. To graduate, scholars must complete a scholarly project in curriculum development, faculty development, or educational research; demonstrate progress towards construction of a teaching portfolio; and participate regularly and actively in program sessions. The TSP has developed and nurtured an active cadre of supportive colleagues who are transforming educational practice, elevating the status of teaching, and increasing the recognition of teachers. Graduates fill key teaching and leadership positions at the UW and in national and international professional organizations.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Curriculum
  • Education, Medical, Graduate / methods*
  • Faculty, Medical / standards*
  • Fellowships and Scholarships*
  • Humans
  • Leadership*
  • Middle Aged
  • Organizational Case Studies
  • Professional Competence
  • Program Development*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Schools, Medical / organization & administration*
  • Staff Development / methods*
  • Total Quality Management
  • Washington