gms | German Medical Science

Jahrestagung der Gesellschaft für Medizinische Ausbildung (GMA)

09.09. - 12.09.2020, Zürich, Schweiz

Development of a longitudinal interprofessional clinical reasoning curriculum – an international project

Meeting Abstract

  • Inga Hege - Universität Augsburg, Medizinische Fakultät, Augsburg, Deutschland
  • Martin Adler - Instruct gGmbH, München, Deutschland
  • Steven Durning - Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, USA
  • Samuel Edelbring - Örebro University School of Health Sciences, Örebro, Schweden
  • Sören Huwendiek - Universität Bern, Institut für Medizinische Lehre IML, Bern, Schweiz
  • Andrzej Kononowicz - Jagiellonian University, Krakau, Polen
  • Monika Sobocan - University of Maribor, Maribor, Slowenien
  • Malgorzata Sudacka - Jagiellonian University, Krakau, Polen
  • Nils Thiessen - EDU Medical College, Kalkara, Malta
  • Felicitas Wagner - Universität Bern, Institut für Medizinische Lehre IML, Bern, Schweiz
  • Elisabet Welin - Örebro University School of Health Sciences, Örebro, Schweden

Jahrestagung der Gesellschaft für Medizinische Ausbildung (GMA). Zürich, 09.-12.09.2020. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2020. DocV-003

doi: 10.3205/20gma003, urn:nbn:de:0183-20gma0038

Veröffentlicht: 18. November 2020

© 2020 Hege et al.
Dieser Artikel ist ein Open-Access-Artikel und steht unter den Lizenzbedingungen der Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License (Namensnennung). Lizenz-Angaben siehe



Background/Aims: Clinical reasoning is a complex set of abilities healthcare students have to learn during their studies and continue to further develop in the workplace. Due to its multifactorial nature and unconscious components it is both difficult to learn and teach. Despite the importance of clinical reasoning for the workplace of healthcare professionals and patient safety, there is still a lack of structured and explicit teaching, learning, and assessment of clinical reasoning in healthcare education.

Therefore, the aim of this project is to fill this gap and conceptualize, develop, evaluate, and disseminate a clinical reasoning curriculum for healthcare students and a train-the-trainer course for educators on how to teach clinical reasoning.

Methods: The project follows the Kern cycle of curriculum development [1], starting with a needs analysis to identify barriers and challenges for implementing a clinical reasoning curriculum. The general [2] and specific needs analyses include semi-structured interviews, questionnaires, and focus groups with different stakeholders, such as students, educators, or curriculum developers. Based on the results we will define outcomes and a framework for the curriculum and train-the-trainer course along with educational material that will then be piloted in healthcare curricula in several European institutions.

The project is co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union.

Results: The project started in January 2020 with the specific needs analysis based on a general needs assessment conducted in 2018. In the general needs analysis. We found a gap between the perceived importance of teaching and assessing clinical reasoning and the implementation of a structured longitudinal curriculum of clinical reasoning in healthcare education. Three main barriers mentioned by the respondents were:

lack of awareness for the need of explicit clinical reasoning teaching,
lack of guidelines for developing a clinical reasoning curriculum, and
lack of qualified educators.

Discussion: Despite the research advancements and the development of a wide range of teaching and assessment methods, there is still a clear gap in curricular implementation of clinical reasoning teaching. This international project has the aim to close this gap by developing in a collaborative initiative a clinical reasoning curriculum based on latest research results. The project and the curriculum will address and aim to overcome the current barriers and preoccupations identified in our needs analysis, thus, we hope the developed material will be suitable for different types of curricula, healthcare professions, and teaching cultures.

Take home messages: Despite its importance, clinical reasoning is still not taught in a structured way in most healthcare curricula. Our international and interprofessional project aims to overcome this by providing a structured longitudinal clinical reasoning curriculum for students and educators.


Thomas PA, Kern DE, Hughes MT, Chen BY, editors. Curriculum Development for Medical Education: A Six-Step Approach. third edition edition. Baltimore: Springer Publishing Company; 2015. p.312
Kononowicz AA, Hege I, Edelbring S, Sobocan M, Huwendiek S, Durning SJ. The need for longitudinal clinical reasoning teaching and assessment: Results of an international survey. Med Teach. 2020;42(4):457-462. DOI: 10.1080/0142159X.2019.1708293 Externer Link