Clinical rotations play an important role in the medical curriculum and are considered crucial for student learning. However, competencies that should be learned can differ from those that are assessed. In order to explore which competencies are considered important for daily performance of student on the wards and to what extent clinical teachers consider the same competencies important for clerkship grading, a survey that consisted of 21 different student characteristics was administered to clinical teachers. Two independent factor analyses using structural equation modeling were conducted to abstract underlying latent relationships among the different student characteristics and to define a clinical competence profile for daily performance of students on the wards and clerkship grading. Differences between the degree of importance for student daily ward performance and clerkship grading are considered and discussed. The results of the survey indicate that the degree of importance of competencies are rated different for daily performance of students on the wards and clerkship grades. Competencies related to the diagnostic process are more important for clerkship grading, whereas interpersonal skills, professional qualities, and motivation are more important for daily ward performance. It is concluded that the components of clinical competence considered important for adequate performance are not necessarily in alignment with what is required for grading. Future research should focus on an explanation why clinical educators think differently about the importance of competencies for student examination in contrast to what is required for adequate daily performance on the wards.

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Advances in Health Sciences Education
Department of Psychology

Wimmers, P., Kanter, S., Splinter, T., & Schmidt, H. (2008). Is clinical competence perceived differently for student daily performance on the wards versus clerkship grading?. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 13(5), 693–707. doi:10.1007/s10459-007-9075-1