About NOSM Education Research Communities
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Friday, March 27 - Saturday, March 28, 2015
Holiday Inn
Sudbury, Ontario

Northern Constellations 2015 was marked by a record attendance of 257 participants which included faculty members from all three divisions along-side NOSM staff and learners.  Energized faculty members engaged in conversations about their academic roles, networked and connected on a personal basis, and were inspired by both keynote and workshop presenters.  Themes from the three plenaries included training for generalism: preparing our graduates for broad based comprehensive care; slowing down: a component of expert clinical judgement which provides opportunities for self-reflection; and the civility paradigm: a framework for creating comfortable and energizing workplaces.  The 37 workshops allowed conference participant to attend a unique set of educational sessions specific to their unique interests and learning goals.  Optional conference related activities included wellness sessions, research consultations, affiliated meetings, and postgraduate retreats.

At the Northern Constellations Friday Dinner, faculty and learner achievements were celebrated with the Faculty Promotions Ceremony, Faculty and Learner Peer Awards of Excellence, and the PCTA Leadership Awards.   

Click here to view the Northern Constellations 2015 final program.



A5: Clinical faculty engagement – Why you should say “I do”

Presenter: Barb Zelek MD, CCFP, FCFP; Chris Rossi MD, CCFP

Faculty are one of the most important assets of a medical school. Engaged faculty care about the future of their medical school and are willing to invest discretionary efforts to ensure that it succeeds. NOSM’s distributed model of education presents unique advantages and challenges for engaging clinical faculty. Literature related to faculty engagement will be reviewed and participants will be encouraged to share their experiences.

Learning Objectives

  • Review literature related to faculty engagement.
  • Define enablers and barriers to clinical faculty engagement unique to the NOSM distributed model of education.

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A7: Creating community-based research collaborations: Speed dating for a healthier north!

Presenters: Marion Maar PhD; Maurianne Reade MD, CCFP (EM), FCFP


Although there is increasing interest among Northern Ontario clinicians to participate in research, clinical demands create challenges. University-based researchers know how to initiate research projects but may need community engagement and clinical perspectives to improve their understanding of health issues. How does one connect and get started? Principles of contact theory will be used to foster inter-professional research collaborations between clinicians and researchers from all disciplines providing opportunities to establish connections for future research projects.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe models for the development of community-based research that builds on the complementary skills of clinical and research oriented faculty at NOSM.
  • Jointly identify aspirations, barriers and facilitators for community-based inter-professional research connecting human, medical and clinical sciences faculty at NOSM.

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A10: Changes to CFPC MainPro and accrediting your education event through NOSM CEPD

Presenters: Ed Hirvi MD, CCFP; Julie Colquhoun

The College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) Maintenance of Proficiency Program (MainPro) is evolving into MainPro+ with many changes that will affect all members of the CFPC. These changes will be reviewed along with strategies for maintaining proficiency competence through relevant continuing professional development that meet CFPC requirements. Participants will also learn about the NOSM CEPD Office and the process to follow for accrediting CME events in their own communities.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe MainPro+ including credit eligible activities, credit requirements, and the role of an impact assessment on learning activities.
  • Describe the process and requirements for obtaining accreditation for a CME event through NOSM CEPD office.

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B7: Assessment principles and practices

Presenters: Stacey Ritz PhD; Tara Baldisera MD, CCFP

Effective assessment has many dimensions including measurement, global ratings, observational evaluation, psychometrics, writing exam questions, marking student work, along with formative and summative uses of assessment. Participants will review principles of assessment in medical education. This workshop will be of particular relevance to faculty involved in assessment of learners and educational activities in the undergraduate program although the principles will have applicability to all faculty members.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe key aspects of assessment in medical education.
  • Select appropriate assessment methods to suit different educational circumstances.

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B8: Teaching EBM on the run

Presenters: David Allen MD, CCFP (EM); Sam Stone MD, CCFP

Although EBM is an important part of the NOSM undergraduate and postgraduate curriculums, preceptors sometimes express concerns about their own EBM skills. Practicing clinicians use EBM skills every day to care for their patients, but may not be aware of techniques and resources to obtain the best available information. Strategies to incorporate EBM into bedside teaching will be reviewed including developing PICO questions and educational prescriptions. Resources available for teaching EBM skills will be identified.

Learning Objectives

  • Apply one minute, five minute and thirty minute strategies to incorporate EBM into day-to-day teaching.
  • Identify strategies to support learners in identifying and searching clinical questions as they arise.

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C6: Learning the language of the Triple C Curriculum and how it applies to preceptors

Presenters: Kim Varty MD, CCFP; Jessica Beaton MD, CCFP; Julie Rendell BAH, Bed

Although we are taught to avoid medical jargon with patient care, in medical education jargon seems bountiful. Competency based training shifts time based rotations to the achievement of desired competencies. NOSM is currently developing the roles of primary preceptor (competency coach) and clinical preceptor (clinical coach). Both preceptors have responsibilities to guide or “coach” residents through their competency based training. Learning this lingo helps all preceptors provide more comprehensive learning experiences and better structure their teaching and evaluations.

Learning Objectives

  • Review the Triple C Curriculum domains of care and evolving professional competencies and demonstrate how they guide evaluations of residents.
  • Describe roles of primary preceptor (competency coach) and clinical preceptor (clinical coach) including their responsibilities in coaching residents.

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C7: Keep movin’ on up: An introduction to the NOSM promotions process

Presenters: Jack Haggarty MD, FRCPC; Barbara Zelek MD, CCFP, FCFP

An orientation to the NOSM Promotions Policy and review of the promotions process will be provided. The pivotal role that documentation provided by an applicant has on the review process will be highlighted along with strategies to streamline the application process. Workshop presenters will recommend ways that applicants can increase their chances for success in seeking promotion at NOSM.

Learning Objectives

  • Assess essential elements of a successful application at each level from Assistant Professor to Professor.
  • Define specific requirements for promotion, to determine if one should seek promotion.

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C8: Interprofessional Team Observed Structured Clinical Encounters (TOSCEs)

Presenters: Jackie Hummelbrunner MSc SLP; Gayle Adams-Carpino RSW, MSW

Interprofessional Team Observed Structured Clinical Encounter (TOSCE) was developed and validated as an assessment tool of interprofessional team competencies in primary care. This tool can be used as a mock educational experience or evaluation of team function in clinical practice. Evaluation assesses team and interprofessional collaboration skills. Feedback is provided in a formative and summative manner. TOSCE is a useful way to engage and enhance interprofessional team function.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe Team Observed Structured Clinical Encounter including benefits and validated research.
  • Demonstrate a Team Observed Clinical Encounter including process for providing summative and formative feedback.

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D2: Competency based medical education: Lessons from the NOSM Anesthesiology Programs


Presenters: Rob Anderson MD, FRCP, CCM; Cathy Cervin MD, MAEd, FCFP; Christina Tremblay BA

As the CFPC and RCPSC move toward competency based medical education (CBME), residency programs are revising their curriculums along with clarifying the impacts on their day to day operations. Anesthesiology has been one of the early cohort of programs to adopt CBME with the unique opportunity to develop competency assessment structures through both colleges. Participants will discuss the changing definitions, uncertain implementation, and culture change implications for their educational programs.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the two models of CBME that are being implemented in Canada: CFPC competency assessment program and RCPSC competency by design.
  • Build an assessment framework which will support the use of milestones, entrustable professional activities, and skill dimensions.

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D4: Learner evaluation: Strategies, tools, and pearls

Presenter: James Goertzen MD, MClSc, CCFP

Evaluation is a critical component of supervising students and residents. In order to be effective evaluations require time, planning, along with the use of various tools and frameworks. Evaluations clarify a learner’s progress, motivate their learning, and reinforce the importance of attaining clinical competence. Engaging learners as essential partners in the evaluation process can result in two way conversations which provide important information to both the learner and preceptor.

Learning Objectives

  • Identify various methods for collecting data on learner performance: field notes, check lists, critical incidents.
  • Discuss core components of effective evaluations: clarifying learning objectives, structuring clinical activities, ongoing feedback, midpoint assessment, and final evaluation.

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D7: PubMed for busy healthcare professionals

Presenters: Jennifer Dumond BA, MLIS; Sophie Regalado BA, MA, MISt

It is important for busy healthcare professionals to learn efficient information retrieval as part of evidence-based clinical practice. An overview of PubMed will be provided including the database’s scope, content, and architecture, as well as the built-in features to facilitate basic searching. Participants are encouraged to bring their own laptop to facilitate a hands-on experience which will include retrieving full-text articles through the Health Sciences Library.

Learning Objectives

  • Effectively navigate the PubMed interface and perform quick searches for specific authors or topics using keywords.
  • Use special features like MyNCBI, clinical queries, and systematic reviews search functions.

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Contact Us:

James Goertzen,

Medical Director, Faculty Development    


Christina Graves

Coordinator, CEPD



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