Research priorities for multi-institutional collaborative research in surgical education

Am J Surg. 2015 Jan;209(1):52-8. doi: 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2014.08.032. Epub 2014 Oct 22.


Background: Research in surgical education has seen unprecedented growth but originates from single institutions and remains uncoordinated; this study aimed to generate a list of research priorities in surgical educational topics.

Methods: The membership of the Association for Surgical Education was asked to submit up to 5 research questions concerned with multi-institutional collaborative surgical education research and to identify challenges faced by surgical education researchers. A modified Delphi methodology was used to create the research agenda based on these responses.

Results: Surgical educators responded to 3 survey rounds. Categories of submitted questions included teaching methods and curriculum development; assessment and competency; simulation; medical student preparation and selection; impact of work hour restrictions; and faculty development. Participants cited institutional culture and practice variability and lack of institutional review board coordination as common barriers to collaborative research, while identifying extensive planning, frequent communication, and availability of dedicated research coordinators as the most important facilitators.

Conclusions: Using a Delphi methodology, a prioritized agenda for multi-institutional surgical education research was developed that may help advance surgeon education.

Keywords: Association for surgical education; Delphi process; Educational research; Multi-institutional collaborative research; Research agenda; Surgical education.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Cooperative Behavior
  • Curriculum
  • Data Collection
  • Delphi Technique
  • Education, Medical, Graduate / methods*
  • Faculty
  • General Surgery / education*
  • Humans
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic / methods*
  • Research*
  • Teaching / methods
  • United States