Current Practices and Perspectives on Peer Observation and Feedback: A National Survey.

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DOI: 10.1016/j.acap.2019.03.005


OBJECTIVE: Peer observation and feedback (POF) is the direct observation of an activity performed by a colleague followed by feedback with the goal of improved performance and professional development. Although well described in the education literature, the use of POF as a tool for development beyond teaching skills has not been explored. We aimed to characterize the practice of POF among pediatric hospitalists to explore the perceived benefits and barriers and to identify preferences regarding POF.

METHODS: We developed a 14-item cross-sectional survey regarding divisional expectations, personal practice, perceived benefits and barriers, and preferences related to POF. We refined the survey based on expert feedback, cognitive interviews, and pilot testing, distributing the final survey to pediatric hospitalists at 12 institutions across the United States.

RESULTS: Of 357 eligible participants, 198 (56%) responded, with 115 (58%) practicing in a freestanding children's hospital. Although 61% had participated in POF, less than one half (42%) reported divisional POF expectation. The most common perceived benefits of POF were identifying areas for improvement (94%) and learning about colleagues' teaching and clinical styles (94%). The greatest perceived barriers were time (51%) and discomfort with receiving feedback from peers (38%), although participation within a POF program reduced perceived barriers. Most (76%) desired formal POF programs focused on improving teaching skills (85%), clinical management (83%), and family-centered rounds (82%).

CONCLUSIONS: Although the majority of faculty desired POF, developing a supportive environment and feasible program is challenging. This study provides considerations for improving and designing POF programs.

Journal Title

Acad Pediatr





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MeSH Keywords

Adult; Attitude of Health Personnel; Cross-Sectional Studies; Female; Formative Feedback; Hospitalists; Hospitals, University; Humans; Male; Middle Aged; Pediatrics; Peer Group; Surveys and Questionnaires; United States


faculty development; feedback; peer observation

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