segunda-feira, 29 de fevereiro de 2016


What does it take to be a mentor?

Being a great M.E.N.T.O.R will help you just as much as your students, says Nirmala Hariharan

Mentoring is one of the most crucial roles played by faculty on a day to day basis. As a mentor, you provide scientific and technical guidance, and serve as the pillar of support for your team of students, postdocs and trainees. Mentoring can consume a lot of your time, and be very demanding, but has several long term benefits that will help you run a successful lab. Here’s what a great M.E.N.T.O.R provides for their students.

Nirmala Hariharan

Motivation. You’re the constant source of motivation for your team; you need to see the big picture and guide your team through the ups and downs. You’re the leader that inspires excellence and encourages scientific innovation. As a good mentor, you must recognise the true potential of your mentees – even if they don’t – and know how to bring out the best in them. In short, you should make them realise what they’re capable of.

Emotional Support and Connection. As a mentor, you need to provide emotional support to your mentees as they struggle to find their place in science. Career decisions are strongly impacted by the irregularities of life generally, so be willing to discuss and share incidents from your life that helped you tackle problems in science, and balance your personal life with your work.

Connecting with your mentees on an emotional and personal level helps them recognise that you’re available when they need support and encourages them to reach out when they need it. An emotional connection helps in building a mutually beneficial, professional relationship of respect and friendship, which will hopefully last for many years.

Networking. One of the most important roles of a mentor is to help mentees build strong professional relationships by introducing them to your own network. Conferences are fantastic avenues to network, and giving credit to your mentee and directly introducing them to your friends and colleagues has tremendous advantages for both of you.

Teaching. A good mentor has to be a good teacher. Your day to day tasks will include teaching experimental procedure, scientific concepts and writing, and helping with data analysis and general troubleshooting. Mentoring requires tremendous patience and – importantly – also requires allowing your mentees to make mistakes and learn from them themselves.

Opportunities for Career Growth. Providing opportunities for your mentee’s career growth is extremely important, so make sure to discuss goals often, and encourage mentees to think about their progress.

There are many ways you can provide opportunities for career development to your students – review their CV and professional materials, encourage them to apply for awards that demonstrate their excellence, discuss potential job opportunities and alternative career choices, and teach them how to excel at self-promotion. The more your mentees grow in their careers, the more satisfaction and recognition you’ll get for being an awesome mentor.

Role model. Ultimately to be a good mentor you have to be an excellent role model. Practice what you preach, demonstrate integrity in your professional and personal interactions, and show by example how to balance work and life. Be resilient, handle rejections, efficiently manage time and make sure to be a caring mentor.

It’s never too early to learn how to mentor – start now if you haven’t already. Mentoring is different from classroom teaching and requires hours of personal interaction. Getting over your inhibitions or issues with communication are important to excel as a mentor. Have patience and keep developing as you mentor people with different personalities. Remember it takes time to build trust with your mentee and you’ll get better with time and practice. Get feedback, and take suggestions and negative critiques seriously, so you can improve.

Being a mentor means being a ‘Guru’, a Sanskrit word that literally means ‘one who dispels darkness’ – a person that shows the way to pure knowledge. Mentoring is one of the most rewarding and exciting aspects of being a faculty member. Enjoy the ride because the more you give, the more you get back.

Nirmala Hariharan is an adjunct assistant professor at UC Davis’ School of Medicine, where she mentors in and researches molecular signalling pathways for basic cardiovascular sciences.

Online students

10 must-haves to appease online students

By Meris Stansbury

Large-scale survey recognizes often-contradictory demands from students; offers recommendations for programs.



Higher ed online learning students expect a lot from their programs; but with every student’s unique expectations and desires, how can institutions not only rise above the competition, but offer the best online learning options for their students?

Those are the questions a joint survey–conducted by Learning House and Aslanian Market Research of 1,500 individuals part of higher ed online learning programs nationwide–aimed to answer in its fourth annual survey.

Every year, these organizations conduct a survey of students at least 18 years old; have a minimum of a high school degree; and were recently enrolled, currently enrolled, or planning to enroll in the next 12 months in either a fully online undergraduate or graduate degree program or a fully online certificate or licensure program. (To access the 2012, 2013, and 2014 reports, click here.)

The report summarizes the trends in the online student experience, from recruitment to graduation, and aims to provide insights on how to attract and serve these students.

“The patterns and preferences of the sample of individual interviews are reflective of online students as a whole, and the data reflect a national template of the behavior and preferences of these students,” notes the report. “College and university leaders can use this information to attract and serve this growing population. Individual institutions should also consider regional data and their positioning in the local marketplace.”

10 must-have’s from 2016’s online learning students

According to the report, today’s online learning program:


1.Must help with students’ careers: Roughly 75 percent of online students surveyed seek further education to change careers, get a job, earn a promotion or keep up to date with their skills. The third most appealing marketing message among the group sampled was “a high job placement rate.” Online learning must also be major- or program-driven, as 60 percent of respondents indicated that they selected their program of study first and then considered institutions. One-third responded that the critical factor in decision-making was “The program was the best match,” which was more important than price or reputation. “Colleges that want to excel in attracting prospective online students must prepare them for, and connect them to, the world of work,” highlights the report.


2.Must offer choices for personalization: The report emphasizes throughout that online students are diverse in their preferences, so there is no one-size-fits-all strategy. “The preferences of online college students are often contradictory, so decision-makers need to consider and pursue a variety of strategies to reach the maximum amount of this population,” says the report. One example of contradictory attitudes can be seen in the survey’s question of: “How often would you be willing to log in at a specific time to join a required discussion or virtual lecture with your instructor and classmates?” 21 percent of students responded “never,” but 15 percent responded “more than five times per course.” When asked if they preferred paper or electronic textbooks, 43 percent preferred electronic, 33 percent preferred paper and 23 percent didn’t have a preference.


3.Must be flexible with policies and processes: Students surveyed noted that these policies and processes should include “shorter academic terms (five to eight weeks); generous credit transfer policies; informative websites; and speedy response times on admission decisions, transfer credit reviews and financial aid packaging.” These online student-friendly practices are becoming minimum requirements for institutions that want to thrive in this arena, says the report. For example, the amount of transfer credit accepted has consistently been ranked one of the top 10 factors in selecting an institution these surveys, and one-quarter of students reported receiving that information prior to submitting their application.


4.Must provide local sources of information: The survey revealed that half of online students surveyed live within 50 miles of their campus, and 65 percent live within 100 miles. Even though these students rarely, if ever, visit the campus, it is nearby. Thirty-four percent of respondents reported that the recommendation of friends, colleagues and relatives was an important factor in deciding if a college had a good reputation. Online students were asked, “After identifying institutions of interest, what were your primary methods of gathering detailed information?” 24 percent reported attending an open house, 31 percent had conversations with friends and family, and 21 percent had conversations with their employers or colleagues. Online students were also found to “pre-select” their preferred institution of study, as one-third contacted only one institution when deciding to pursue their online education. “It is critical that institutions have a strong local brand so that they are at the top of their students’ minds when they begin to search for a program of study,” stresses the report.


5.Must have a great website: (Read: “Your .edu site for 2016 looks like this.”) 16 percent of respondents reported having no contact with personnel at the institution prior to applying; yet, almost 50 percent reported turning directly to the college website when they were asked, “What were your primary methods of gathering detailed information?” Similarly, 43 percent of students reported using the website to request more information about their program of interest. Almost 30 percent sent an email for more information, and 28 percent called the institution.


6.Must be affordable: 45 percent of respondents to the 2015 survey reported that they selected the most inexpensive institution. In 2014, 30 percent reported selecting the most inexpensive institution. Among 23 potential marketing messages, the most appealing were “Affordable tuition” and “Free textbooks.”


7.Must include instructor communication: Only 10 percent of respondents thought online instruction was not as good as their in-class instruction; yet, when asked about their concerns with online instruction, 21 percent reported “Inconsistent/poor contact and communication with instructors,” and 17 percent reported “Inconsistent/poor quality of instruction. ” When respondents were asked if they would prefer online tutorials, independent study or instructor-led classes, only about one-third favored instructor-led online classes, which is the predominant format offered currently. One-third would like a faculty member as their advisor, and about half would find optional internships and on campus courses attractive.


8.Must offer fully online…but also blended: When asked if they would attend on-campus classes if their program was not available online, about 30 percent of respondents said they probably or definitely would not. About one-quarter said they probably or definitely would not attend a hybrid or low-residency program. However, “although some students prefer never going to campus and never participating in synchronous online learning activities, a significant percentage is interested in on-campus activities, classes and internships,” notes the report. About half of the respondents indicated they would attend a hybrid or low-residency option if their program was not available fully online. 22 percent indicated “One or more optional on-campus courses” was very attractive.


9.Must have transparent data: The data in this report indicate that substantial numbers of students are interested in knowing more about features that institutions could use to distinguish themselves, such as price, self-study options, faculty advisors or job placement rates. Additionally, respondents reported that they selected an institution based on a variety of information such as tuition, admission requirements and available programs, all of which should be available on a college’s website.


10.Must market to all ages: The survey found that while online education has traditionally been marketed toward adult learners, more and more students under 25 years of age are choosing to study online for their undergraduate degrees.

For much more information on the survey, including methodology and in-depth findings and recommendations, read the full report, “Online College Students: Comprehensive Data on Demands and Preferences.

terça-feira, 23 de fevereiro de 2016

InovaSUS 2015

Prêmio InovaSUS - Divulgado resultado da avaliação por pares

A avaliação por pares dos trabalhos concorrendo ao Prêmio InovaSUS 2015 foi concluída e os resultados estão disponíveis para consulta.

Nesta etapa, cada autor inscrito foi convidado a avaliar 5 outros trabalhos de outros estados, o que enriqueceu muito o processo. Cada trabalho foi avaliado segundo critérios claros e objetivos, sendo selecionados os 20 melhores de cada região e categoria.

Como previsto no edital, os trabalhos selecionados deverão dispor de recursos do prêmio via carta-acordo com a OPAS/OMS para implementar e consolidar os projetos.

Entre os selecionados, encontra-se o projeto "Atenção à Saúde I e II: a reorientação da formação por meio da educação interprofissional e práticas colaborativas" da UEM, encabeçado pelos Professores Rozilda Alves, Adriana Albiero e Edson Arpini Miguel e do qual orgulhosamente faço parte.

Clique aqui para conhecer a relação dos projetos aprovados nesta fase.

segunda-feira, 22 de fevereiro de 2016

Social media

Who’s misbehaving? Perceptions of unprofessional social media use by medical students and faculty


Elizabeth A. Kitsis , Felise B. Milan, Hillel W. Cohen, Daniel Myers, Patrick Herron, Mimi McEvoy,
Jacqueline Weingarten and Martha S. Grayson
BMC Medical Education 2016 16:67



Social media use by physicians offers potential benefits but may also be associated with professionalism problems. The objectives of this study were: 1) to examine and compare characteristics of social media use by medical students and faculty; 2) to explore the scope of self- and peer-posting of unprofessional online content; and 3) to determine what actions were taken when unprofessional content was viewed.


An anonymous, web-based survey was sent to medical students and faculty in October, 2013 at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, New York.


Three-quarters of medical students reported using social media “very frequently” (several times a day), whereas less than one-third of faculty did so (p < .001). Medical students reported using privacy settings more often than faculty (96.5 % v. 78.1 %, p  < .001). Most medical students (94.2 %) and faculty (94.1 %) reported “never” or “occasionally” monitoring their online presence (p = 0.94). Medical students reported self-posting of profanity, depiction of intoxication, and sexually suggestive material more often than faculty (p < .001). Medical students and faculty both reported peer-posting of unprofessional content significantly more often than self-posting. There was no association between year of medical school and posting of unprofessional content.


Medical students reported spending more time using social media and posting unprofessional content more often than did faculty.