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10-11-2021 | Eye-Opener | Uitgave 6/2021 Open Access

Perspectives on Medical Education 6/2021

Rethinking implementation science for health professions education: A manifesto for change

Perspectives on Medical Education > Uitgave 6/2021
Aliki Thomas, Rachel H. Ellaway
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Supplementary Information

The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s40037-021-00688-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.


Implementation science approaches the challenges of translating evidence into practice as a matter of scientific inquiry. This conceptual paper uses an implementation science lens to examine the ways in which evidence from health professions education research is brought to bear on decision-making. The authors describe different decision-making contexts and the kinds of evidence they consider, and from this, they outline ways in which research findings might be better presented to support their translation into policy and practice. Reflecting on the nature of decision-making in health professions education and how decisions are made and then implemented in different health professions education contexts, the authors argue that researchers should align their work with the decision-making contexts that are most likely to make use of them. These recommendations reflect implementation science principles of packaging and disseminating evidence in ways that are meaningful for key stakeholders, that stem from co-creation of knowledge, that require or result in meaningful partnerships, and that are context specific and relevant.
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