A Systematic Review of Development Programs Designed to Address Leadership in Academic Health Center Faculty

J Contin Educ Health Prof. 2019 Winter;39(1):42-48. doi: 10.1097/CEH.0000000000000229.


Introduction: To describe Academic Health Center (AHC) faculty leadership development program characteristics and categorize leadership topics into thematic areas suggesting competency domains to guide programmatic curricular development.

Methods: A systematic literature review was conducted (PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health Literature [CINAHL], and Journal Storage [JSTOR databases]). Eligible studies described programs with leadership development intent for faculty in AHCs. Information was extracted using a structured data form and process.

Results: Six hundred ninety citations were screened; 25 publications describing 22 unique programs were eligible. The majority (73%) were institutionally based; mean class size was 18.5 (SD ± 10.2, range 4.5-48); and mean in-person time commitment was 110 hours (SD ± 101.2, range 16-416), commonly occurring in regular intervals over months to years (n = 10, 45%). Six programs provided per participant costs (mean $7,400, range $1000-$21,000). Didactic teaching was the primary instructional method (99.5%); a majority (68%) included project work. Fourteen thematic content areas were derived from 264 abstracted topics. The majority or near majority incorporated content regarding leadership skills, organizational strategy and alignment, management, self-assessment, and finance/budget.

Discussion: Institutions and faculty invest significantly in leadership development programs, addressing perceived needs and with perceived benefit for both. The prevalence of common curricular content indicates that AHCs deem important faculty development in leadership, business, and self-assessment skills.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Academic Medical Centers / methods
  • Academic Medical Centers / organization & administration
  • Humans
  • Leadership*
  • Staff Development / methods
  • Staff Development / standards*
  • Staff Development / trends