An application of programmatic assessment for learning (PAL) system for general practice training

Lambertus Schuwirth, Nyoli Valentine, P Dilena

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)


    Aim: Programmatic assessment for learning (PAL) is becoming more and more popular as a concept but its implementation is not without problems. In this paper we describe the design principles behind a PAL program in a general practice training context. Design principles: The PAL program was designed to optimise the meaningfulness of assessment information for the registrar and to make him/her use that information to self regulate their learning. The main principles in the program were cognitivist and transformative. The main cognitive principles we used were fostering the understanding of deep structures and stimulating transfer by making registrars constantly connect practice experiences with background knowledge. Ericsson’s deliberate practice approach was built in with regard to the provision of feedback combined with Pintrich’s model of self regulation. Mezirow’s transformative learning and insights from social network theory on collaborative learning were used to support the registrars in their development to become GP professionals. Finally the principal of test enhanced learning was optimised. Epilogue: We have provided this example explain the design decisions behind our program, but not want to present our program as the solution to any given situation.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article numberDoc56
    Number of pages11
    JournalGMS Journal for Medical Education
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2017


    • General practice training
    • Programmatic assessment
    • Ssessment


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