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AAPM Newsletter | September/October 2021 Vo l u m e 4 6 , N o . 5


we can provide our trainees with the tools to be prepared. To do so, we need to ensure our students have a strong, fundamental background and understanding of physics and medical physics. We need to prepare our students to be critical thinkers, to be engaged in their learning. Further, we should consider including course offerings in other disciplines such as immunotherapy, molecular biology, big data, and machine learning, as well as business courses in topics such as communication and management. In short, we need to prepare and position our trainees to be “scientific agents of precision, innovation, and value in the development and practice of medicine [5].” In addition to routinely reviewing and updating our course content to reflect technological advancements and changes in clinical practice, we also need to periodically update our teaching style and approach. Many medical physics educators rely on traditional, instructor-centric teaching models, in which an instructor attempts to transfer information to their students and/or trainees through lectures, hands-on labs, or on-the-job training. However, there are a number of active, student-centric pedagogical models that may prove to be more effective and enhance the learning experience of our students and trainees. Examples of these innovative techniques include: • Just in Time Learning [6,7] – An approach in which

students are given short questions on at-home reading due prior to class and to make use of the students’ answers to guide that day’s lecture. • Peer Instruction [7,8] – In this approach group problems

based on specific concepts are incorporated within the lecture to engage students, enhance the learning experience, and to guide the subsequent class discussions. • Flipped Classroom [9] – An approach that flips the

traditional home and classroom activities (i.e., lectures are recorded and watched prior to class, allowing students to spend class time working in groups on conceptual questions and problem solving). • Problem/Project-based learning [10] – In this technique,

the learner is presented with an open-ended problem or project, and they are required to perform background research to determine what needs to be done to complete the task, and then to do it. Although many of us have not had formal training in education, there are many wonderful resources available

in the AAPM virtual library and on the Committee on Medical Physicists as Educators wiki [11]. Additionally, the AAPM plans to host another workshop for educators in the near future. As educators, we need to educate ourselves on best practices and available tools for teaching. We owe it to our students and trainees to provide them with the best educational techniques to enhance their learning experience. References: [1] Paliwal, B.R., DeLuca, P.M., Grein, E.E., Herbert, D.E., Jackosn, E.F., Podgorsak, E.B., Ritenour, E.R., Smilowitz, J., Starkschall, G., and Verhaegen, F. Report of the Education and Training of Medical Physicists Committee: Academic Program Recommendations for Graduate Degrees in Medical Physics. AAPM (2009). Available from (Accessed 08/04/2021) [2] Prisciandaro, J.I., Willis, C.E., Burmeister, J.W, Clarke, G.D., Das, R.K., Esthappan, J., Gerbi, B.J., Harkness, B.A., Patton, J.A., Peck, D.J., Pizzutiello, R.J., Sandison, G.A., White, S.L., and Wichman, B.D. Report from the Work Group on Periodic Review of Medical Physics Residency Training: Essentials and Guidelines for Clinical Medical Physics Residency Training Programs. AAPM (2013). Available from (Accessed 08/04/2021) [3] CAMPEP, Standards for Accreditation of Graduate Educational Programs in Medical Physics. Available from http://www.campep. org/GraduateStandards.pdf (Accessed 08/04/2021) [4] CAMPEP, Standards for Accreditation of Residency Educational Programs in Medical Physics. Available from http://www.campep. org/ResidencyStandards.pdf (Accessed 08/04/2021) [5] Samei, E. What is Medical Physics 3.0? AAPM Annual Meeting, 2017 [6] Novak, G.M. Just-in-Time Teaching: Blending Active Learning with Web Technology. Addison Wesley. Copyright 1999 [7] Redish, E.F. Teaching Physics with the Physics Suite. John Wiley & Sons. Copyright 2003 [8] Mazur, E. Peer Instruction. Pearson. Copyright 1997 [9] Bergmann, J. and Sams, A. Flip your classroom: Reach every student in every class every day. International Society for Technology in Education. Copyright 2012. [10] Merrill, M.D. A task-centered instructional strategy. Journal of Research on Technology in Education. 40 (1): 5-22 (2007). [11] Committee on Medical Physicists as Educators. MPESC Wiki. Available from article.asp?id=13350 (Accessed 08/04/2021) ¢ | 21