Peer Observation

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Peer Observation

Co Chairs:
Susan Frankl, MD
Lori Newman, EdM

2014-2015 Meetings:

  • Thursday, January 16, 2014 - 3:30-5:00 PM - TMEC 333- RSVP
  • Wednesday, June 11,2014-8:00-9:30AM-TMEC 342-RSVP
  • Wednesday, October 1, 2014- 8:00-9:30AM- TMEC 447- RSVP

Meredith Atkins, MD
Maren Batalden, MD
Lisa Breen, MD
Dara Brodsky, MD
David Brown, MD
Susan Burgin, MD
James Burns, MD
Anne Fabiny, MD
Laurie Fishman, MD
Holly Gooding, MD
Barbara Gottlieb, MD MPH
Anita Gupta, MD
Harley Haynes, MD
Tanzeema Hossain, MD
Kerri Palamara, MD
Alberto Puig, MD PhD
David Roberts, MD
Lidia Schapira, MD
Anjala Tess, MD
Ann-Marie Thomas, MD
Robert Thomas, MD
Kamen Vlassakov, MD
Ruth Ann Vleugels, MD


The primary goals of the HMS Academy’s Interest Group in Peer Observation of Teaching are to develop a culture of teaching improvement across HMS; provide individualized faculty development for those involved in teaching at the UME, GME, and CME levels; and generate a community-wide conversation about best teaching practices. During the 2012-2013 academic year, we focused our efforts on a pilot peer observation of teaching program for the HMS Medical Ethics and Professionalism Course. For this program we used a pre-clerkship, small group, observation instrument previously developed by the interest group. Subcommittees of interest group members were formed to design, implement, and evaluation the pilot program. One subcommittee developed and ran an interactive, training session using video clips edited from an actual Medical Ethics class. A second subcommittee developed introductory material and an observation guide for the Medical Ethics’ faculty. A third subcommittee, developed post-observation surveys for both the observers and the Medical Ethics’ faculty participants. Interest group members were then paired with course faculty members and conducted individual observations of 2-hour small group sessions. Following each observation, the interest group observers met with the faculty members to debrief the experience, offer individualized feedback, and engage in a discussion of best teaching practices.  All participants were surveyed at the conclusion of the observations and a summary of lessons learned was provided to the Medical Ethics course director.

For this academic year, the interest group aims to develop an approach to observe a new pedagogic method termed the “flipped classroom.” As part of the new HMS curriculum reform initiative, the flipped classroom and similar interactive, student-centered teaching methods will become common instructional approaches used during the pre-clerkship years.  


  • Catalogued HMS peer observation programs and instruments
  • Designed a peer observation of teaching survey that was distributed to the HMS Academy membership and the pre-clinical faculty and course directors. Results of the survey indicate that the majority of respondents (n=159) are interested in a participating in a peer observation program and receiving training as a peer observer. Moreover, respondents believe that such a program would provide insight into their teaching and enhance their teaching skills.
  • Presented an HMS symposium in 2011 to determine the elements needed to introduce peer observation of teaching in courses, clerkships, and residency programs as well as identify barriers and viable solutions to implementation of peer observation of teaching programs.
  • Used a modified Delphi Method to create a consensus-derived peer observation instrument for formative assessment of pre-clerkship small group teaching
  •  Collaborated with the HMS Academy to present a 2013 symposium, “Maximizing the Power of Teaching Observations: Tools, Techniques and Training.” Participants of the symposium learned the value of peer observation of teaching for individualized faculty development; identified practical approaches and learned how to apply standardized tools to the peer observation of teaching process; identify common teaching observation pitfalls and generated techniques to troubleshoot these issues; and considered and learned to address the challenges of providing feedback to a faculty member on his/her teaching

 If you have any information of current HMS and HMS-Affiliated peer observation faculty teaching activities, please help us gather data by filling out this form:

Peer Observation of Faculty Teaching Activity Form

2014 Meeting Minutes:

January 16, 2014 Meeting

April 3, 2014 Meeting
Summary of IHP Observation Questions

June 5, 2014 Meeting






**Important article to read about Flipped Classroom Definition - Click here

2013 Meeting Minutes:

1/2/2013 Meeting:
1/2/2013 Agenda
1/2/2013 Minutes

6/19/2013 Meeting:
6/19/2013 Minutes
IN752 Course Description
Analyses of Host and Observer Feedback – Medical Ethics Course

9/12/2013 Meeting:
9/12/2013 Agenda
09/12/2013 Minutes  
Medical Education Reimagined: A Call to Action.
Just Imagine: New Paradigms for Medical Education.
What’s Different about the Inverted Classroom?
Lecture Halls without Lectures—A Proposal for Medical Education.

10/02/2013 Meeting:
Small group observation instrument
Peer Assessment Instrument


11/14/2013 Meeting:
Thought Questions Flipped Classroom

12/05/2013 Meeting
Flipped Classroom Observation Schedule
"The Post-Lecture Classroom: How Will Students Fare?" by Robinson Meyer
Article: The Flipped Classroom

2010-2012 Meetings

11/1/2010 Minutes
2/14/2011 Minutes
4/25/2011 Minutes
9/20/2011 Minutes
11/15/2011 Minutes
1/25/2012 Minutes

10/31/2012 Meeting:
10/31/2012 Agenda
Medical Ethics Course Description
Small Group Discussion Observation Form

12/12/2012 Meeting:
12/12/2012 Agenda
12/12/2012 Minutes
Medical Ethics Course Calendar



Interest Group Resources:

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