OBJECTIVE: To review the current status of research on chiropractic education, including barriers to chiropractic educational research, and provide recommendations for future research activities.
DESIGN: Narrative literature review with annotated bibliography and formal consensus statements using a modified nominal group process.
METHODS: A literature search from January 1985 to May 1996. The following databases were searched: Medline, Chirolars, CINAHL and ERIC. Keywords included student selection, curriculum, student learning, faculty development, performance assessment, instruction, accreditation, program evaluation, interdisciplinary education, institutional culture, governance and leadership. Conference proceedings and the personal files of the authors were searched for relevant citations. A modified nominal group process was used to generate recommendations by the education study group.
RESULTS: The vast majority of current chiropractic educational research studies are descriptive in nature and receive no external funding. These studies are usually presented at chiropractic conferences and published in chiropractic journals. The annotated bibliography identifies key studies and potential models for future research. The education study group recommended that the chiropractic profession should embrace a patient-centered approach to health care and engage in research concerning all components of the educational process including assessment of students, faculty and educational programs.
CONCLUSION: The field of chiropractic educational research should develop its theory and science by defining research issues and questions for investigation and then underpin them with appropriate research methodology. Studies of the chiropractic educational process is critical to the future of chiropractic education and practice.
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