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Centre for Medical Education Research

Research Areas

The Centre has ongoing research interests in a number of areas, relating to theory, policy and practice. Staff members' interests include:

Link to Professionalism


Professionalism is a topic of great interest in medical and other healthcare professions, but one which is still ill-defined and understood. Work in the Centre is concerned both with the definition and measurement of professionalism, and how it may be utilised in assessment.

The effective selection of students and trainees is essential for a high quality clinical workforce, as is the validity and reliability of the assessments that allow them to qualify and advance. The Centre has been involved in many projects relating to the selection of medical students and trainees, and academic and workplace-based assessments.

link to Community Based Medical Education

Community Based Medical Education

Community Based Medical Education gives medical students greater experience of medicine beyond the hospital environment. Durham University is piloting an innovative extended GP, community placement in difficult and deprived areas.


Link to Workplace Culture and Bullying

Workplace Culture and Bullying

Workplace bullying is a persistent problem in the NHS, with significant negative implications for individuals, teams and organisations. In a series of mixed-methods studies, the Centre has investigated the prevalence and impact of bullying, identified barriers to reporting bullying and the sources of bullying, and examined links with workplace culture. The Centre has also evaluated a range of workplace bullying interventions, and has conducted an evidence synthesis on interventions to prevent and manage workplace bullying.

Undergraduate Medicine Pedagogy

Pedagogic research is a prominent theme within the Centre for Medical Education Research. Many Centre members are full-time academics teaching within medical education the following - anatomy, physiology, sociology and pharmacology. The aim of these researchers is to provide an evidence base for best practice within medical education. Popular research areas include innovative pedagogy, knowledge retention, curriculum development and assessment.

The outputs of the group are wide ranging from anatomical body painting to the use of audience response systems and ultrasound within medical education.

Link to Workplace Transitions

Workplace Transitions

The Centre has conducted several projects looking at the experience of clinicians moving from one environment to another – whether from undergraduate to postgraduate training, or from other countries to the UK. Some projects have looked at how curricula and training programmes prepare clinicians for these transitions, while others have considered the experiences of trainees at these times.

Working patterns Clinicians work in different ways, governed by service demands, training programme requirements, and legislation. Several projects have considered the perceptions and effects of different working patterns.

Link to Regulation and Revalidation

Regulation and Revalidation

Staff have been involved in projects relating to the regulation of healthcare professionals for several years, most recently in work relating to the processes for revalidation of doctors, introduced in December 2012.