Residents & Faculty Share Some Perceptions Of The Problem Of Limited Resident Autonomy

self-determination-theory   Researchers asked faculty and residents in one pediatrics residency to respond to a survey with open-ended comments (response rates 70%+) yielding a quantitative and qualitative look at this important topic.  “Both groups agreed that faculty provided too much direction with moderate frequency,” and several causes were mentioned fairly frequently: high patient census and acuity; fragmented resident time; frequent handovers; and differences in expectations.  There seems to be potential for a vicious cycle in which “overdirection by faculty may make residents more passive, whereas resident passivity may stimulate faculty to exert more control.”  Residents and faculty globally evaluated both their own behavior and the other groups’ behavior on parallel scales.  Not surprisingly, both groups judged their own behavior more positively than they did the other group’s. — Laura Willett, MD

Biondi EA, Varade WS, Garfunkel LC, Lynn JF, Craig MS, Cellini MM, Shone LP, Harris JP, Baldwin CD, Discordance Between Resident and Faculty Perceptions of Resident Autonomy: Can Self-Determination Theory Help Interpret Differences and Guide Strategies for Bridging the Divide? Acad Med. 2014 Oct 2.

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