Abstract Background: Person-centered teachers who are more empathic and "indirect" (accept, encourage, praise and ask questions) tend to be more effective than those who are "direct" (lecture, give directions and criticize) (Amidon & Flanders 1991). The Flanders Interaction Analysis (FIA) is a tool for diagnosing these teaching aspects, though not yet used to improve lecturing in undergraduate medical education.
Aims: Does structured expert feedback to volunteer lecturers lead to improvement in person-centered teaching behavior as measured by a Modified Flanders Interaction Analysis (MFIA) and student questionnaires?
Methods: Twenty-one volunteer lecturers from two German medical faculties were stratified by past teaching experience and randomized into two groups. The intervention group received MFIA diagnoses of their lectures plus feedback by an expert observer after winter and summer semester lectures, respectively. The control group was only diagnosed with the MFIA. Teaching behavior changes for both groups were compared and teacher feedback about the intervention process was assessed.
Results: Faculty in the intervention group improved significantly in their summer lectures regarding person-centered teaching behavior while controls did not.
Conclusions: A structured individual expert feedback intervention using a MFIA as a teaching diagnostic tool is a powerful, cost-effective faculty development process for improving teaching behavior of volunteer lecturers in undergraduate medical education.