Having the Hard Conversations: Strengthening pedagogical effectiveness by working with student and institutional resistance to Indigenous health curriculum.

2014 OLT National Teaching Fellow

Keywords: ,

Professor Dennis McDermott

Fellowship years: 2014 - 2016 (year due to complete)

Abstract: Many students and health professionals struggle to engage fully with Indigenous health curricula. North American medical education literature documents student resistance to the role of the social determinants of health in shaping patient presentations. In the Australian context, analysis of colonisation-related determinants can be sufficiently disquieting to lead to varying levels of student disengagement. Future efficacy in Indigenous health, through attainment of a comprehensively-informed, nuanced skill-set, along with the development of culturally-safe practice, is jeopardised. Additionally, without a critical mass of institutional support, Indigenous pedagogical perspectives can be discounted and core subject status dismantled. This senior fellowship will collaboratively develop a program of activities that addresses the challenges of student and institutional engagement. Dissemination activities, involving national stakeholders, will embed strategies to increase the effectiveness of teaching in Indigenous health. Briefings will also be held with accreditation bodies, the key audience overseeing health professional curricula, to seek a targeted strengthening of institutional support for curriculum and staff.

Fellowship discipline: Indigenous Teaching and Learning