International FAIMER Institute
The International FAIMER Institute is a two-year, part-time, online fellowship program in health professions education and leadership development for international health professions faculty. The program is designed to help participants, known as FAIMER Fellows, become credible education and health care leaders by becoming better scholars/researchers and change agents within their organizational systems.
The program is offered entirely online using a blended approach of synchronous and asynchronous learning to educate fellows in the five curriculum themes of the program:
- Project Management and Evaluation – Fellows apply concepts and methods learned to their individual education innovation projects. Key topics include developing a theory of change to guide project planning and evaluation, designing project evaluation, and some basics of research and evaluation including data types, data collection techniques, analysis, and reporting of data.
- Education Methods – This curriculum theme focuses on how people learn, how to assess what they have learned and provide feedback, and how to teach in large and small groups.
- Leadership and Management – This curriculum theme focuses on leadership and management concepts in six contexts: understanding self, understanding and leading others, understanding and leading teams, understanding and leading within the organization, building and leading regional/national communities of practice (COP), and participating in a global COP for improving health to meet community needs.
- Research and Scholarship – This curriculum theme focuses on educational research design and methods (quantitative, qualitative, and mixed), integration of research and scholarship with the Fellow’s FAIMER project, broadening the view of scholarship to align with the current missions of health professions schools, and strategic planning for the career spectrum between researcher/educationalist and scholar/practitioner.
- Quality Assurance – Fellows integrate the concepts of accreditation, learner assessment, program evaluation, leadership skills, cultural awareness and research methods for quality assurance in health professions education.
Approaches to Learning
The International FAIMER Institute employs a variety of approaches to learning that ensure Fellows’ success:
- Project-Based Approach – An education innovation project is the focal point for the application of learning at the Institute. Fellows apply leadership, management, education methodology, and sound research design as they plan and implement their projects.
- Interactive, High-Engagement Teaching – The Institute uses participants’ projects as the “laboratory” to apply their learning, and models high engagement teaching and learning techniques that Fellows can use at their own institutions.
- Positive, Appreciative, Strengths-Based Approach – The curriculum has fully integrated positive, appreciative, and strengths-based approaches to learning and leadership. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI, Year 1) helps Fellows understand the natural strengths of their personality.
- Community of Practice – Our long-term goal is for all FAIMER Fellows to become a global community of practice, a group informally bound together by personal connections and understanding, shared expertise, and passion for improving academic health centers and the people they serve. Concepts to build a community of practice are woven throughout the curriculum.
- Cultural Sensitivity – FAIMER brings international health professions faculty from different cultures together to, in part, enhance Fellows’ cultural competency. Understanding, respecting, and successfully interacting with those whose world views, values, behaviors, communication styles, customs, and practices are different, helps increase one’s own cultural competency.
- Transformational Learning Model – The International FAIMER Institute is intentionally designed as a transformational learning experience for Fellows. The design is grounded in the theory and principles of team-based learning, reflection, dialogue, and the creation of a trust-based, challenging, and supportive learning environment.
Schedule & Coursework Expectations
The International FAIMER Institute is broken into two distinct yearlong programs with the education innovation project being the link throughout the fellowship. The Year 1 and Year 2 programs begin in July and end the following June.
Fellows should expect approximately eight to ten hours of coursework per week with about 75% asynchronous curriculum work and 25% synchronous plenary sessions. The synchronous sessions are typically two hours in length, with some exceptions, and occur from at 8-10 a.m. ET on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and/or Thursdays. These sessions occur generally two or three times per month. In addition, there are assignments through which Fellows connect in pairs or in groups, using virtual connection modes.
Each fellowship cohort should expect a great deal of interactive group work with their colleagues in their cohort. The Year 1 and Year 2 cohorts should also expect interactions and group work between their different cohorts.
Week-long breaks are provided throughout the two-year-long schedule to accommodate holidays and workload.
To successfully participate in the International FAIMER Institute, a fellow must have access to:
- Computer equipment
- Smartphone or tablet
- Internet access
- Word processing software (e.g. Microsoft Word)
- Presentation software (e.g. Microsoft PowerPoint)