Effectiveness of a supervisor training on quality of feedback to internal medicine residents: a controlled longitudinal multicentre study

Nienke Renting, Debbie Jaarsma*, Jan C.C. Borleffs, Joris P J Slaets, Janke Cohen-Schotanus, Rob O B Gans

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
21 Downloads (Pure)


OBJECTIVES: High-quality feedback on different dimensions of competence is important for resident learning. Supervisors may need additional training and information to fulfil this demanding task. This study aimed to evaluate whether a short and simple training improves the quality of feedback residents receive from their clinical supervisors in daily practice.

DESIGN: Longitudinal quasi-experimental controlled study with a pretest/post-test design. We collected multiple premeasurements and postmeasurements for each supervisor over 2 years. A repeated measurements ANOVA was performed on the data.

SETTING: Internal medicine departments of seven Dutch teaching hospitals.

PARTICIPANTS: Internal medicine supervisors (n=181) and residents (n=192).

INTERVENTION: Half of the supervisors attended a short 2.5-hour training session during which they could practise giving feedback in a simulated setting using video fragments. Highly experienced internal medicine educators guided the group discussions about the feedback. The other half of the supervisors formed the control group and received no feedback training.

OUTCOME MEASURES: Residents rated the quality of supervisors' oral feedback with a previously validated questionnaire. Furthermore, the completeness of the supervisors' written feedback on evaluation forms was analysed.

RESULTS: The data showed a significant increase in the quality of feedback after the training F (1, 87)=6.76, p=0.04. This effect remained significant up to 6 months after the training session.

CONCLUSIONS: A short training session in which supervisors practise giving feedback in a simulated setting increases the quality of their feedback. This is a promising outcome since it is a feasible approach to faculty development.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere076946
Number of pages8
JournalBMJ Open
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 28-Sept-2023


  • Medical education
  • faculty development
  • Feedback
  • internal medicine
  • competency based


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