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Revised Assignment 1

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Assignment # 1
Context
Being a faculty in a medical college which is affiliated with a tertiary
care teaching hospital, and being considered as an expert on
assessment, the Dean discusses the actions to be taken on the
recommendations submitted by the institutional task force on
“Improving the quality of Assessments”. Dean has some queries which
need to be answered to move forward.
The paper pertains to the Dean’s queries arising from recommendation
# 1 which is reproduced as follows:
“Appropriate methods should be employed to certify competence
and assess performance along the continuum of medical education”.
The Dean’s queries are addressed as follows.
Dean’s Queries
1. What is the difference between competency, competence, and
performance?
Although the terms competency and competence are quite related,
and in various contexts, they are taken synonymously, basic differences
exist between the two terms in the context of assessment in medical
education.
Competency in medical education is defined as a description of the
skills as well as the knowledge that is required to perform a job function
after qualifying in the context of the experience, behaviors, and
various other attributes that are required to complement the basic
knowledge and skills to perform that job function.
On the other hand, competence refers merely to the qualification and
basic ability required for performing a job function without the context
of the underlying behaviors and approaches required for such a
qualification. Therefore, competency is a broader term that takes into

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account the critical thinking process which is required of the medical
graduates to better fit in their specific roles after graduating.
Performance in medical education refers to the students’ extent and
measure of the achievement of goals by the medical students.
Performance is a much straight-forward phenomenon than
competence and competencies and is directly measured by the use
of numeric assessment systems in vogue in medical education.
2. What tools would you recommend to the Dean to assess the
competence of the graduating student? Justify your choice based
on evidence. Discuss each tool’s main strengths and limitations.
As described already, performance is relatively straight forward to
measure using the conventional examination and grading systems due
to its limited scope. However, assessment of competence of medical
graduates is much broader in scope, based on the definition and
context of competence in medical education.
Traditionally, the performance and competence of medical students
have been assessed using conventional tools like written tests
complemented by practical examinations and viva voce for basic
sciences, and task-oriented assessment of clinical skills (TOACS), and
viva voce for clinical sciences.
The conventional tools for measurement of competence of graduating
students include the following [1]:
Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs)
Multiple choice questions are an objective form of assessment, which
can access competence by the use of questions having four or five
choices amongst which one is correct. The strength of MCQs lies in their
objectivity. The limitation of MCQs is the limited knowledge that can be
tested.
Extending Matching Questions (EMQs)
They are similar to the multiple-choice question, but test knowledge in
greater depth compared to the MCQs, which is their major strength

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1 Assignment # 1 Context Being a faculty in a medical college which is affiliated with a tertiary care teaching hospital, and being considered as an expert on assessment, the Dean discusses the actions to be taken on the recommendations submitted by the institutional task force on “Improving the quality of Assessments”. Dean has some queries which need to be answered to move forward. The paper pertains to the Dean’s queries arising from recommendation # 1 which is reproduced as follows: “Appropriate methods should be employed to certify competence and assess performance along the continuum of medical education”. The Dean’s queries are addressed as follows. Dean’s Queries 1. What is the difference between competency, competence, and performance? Although the terms competency and competence are quite related, and in various contexts, they are taken synonymously, basic differences exist between the two terms in the context of assessment in medical education. Competency in medical education is defined as a description of the skills as well as the knowledge that is required to perform a job function after qualifying in the context of the experience, behaviors, and various other attributes that are required to complement the basic knowledge and skills to perform that job function. On the other hand, competence refers merely to the qualification and basic ability required for performing a job function without the context of the underlying behaviors and approaches requ ...
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