Scholarly practice in healthcare professions: findings from a scoping review

Adv Health Sci Educ Theory Pract. 2022 Dec 1. doi: 10.1007/s10459-022-10180-0. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT

Scholarly practitioners are broadly defined as healthcare professionals that address critical practice problems using theory, scientific evidence, and practice-based knowledge. Though scholarly practice is included in most competency frameworks, it is unclear what scholarly practice is, how it develops and how it is operationalized in clinical practice. The aim of this review was to determine what is known about scholarly practice in healthcare professionals. We conducted a scoping review and searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL from inception to May 2020. We included papers that explored, described, or defined scholarly practice, scholar or scholarly practitioner, and/or related concepts in healthcare professionals. We included a total of 90 papers. Thirty percent of papers contained an explicit definition of scholarly practice. Conceptualizations of scholarly practice were organized into three themes: the interdependent relationship between scholarship and practice; advancing the profession’s field; and core to being a healthcare practitioner. Attributes of scholarly practitioners clustered around five themes: commitment to excellence in practice; collaborative nature; presence of virtuous characteristics; effective communication skills; and adaptive change ethos. No single unified definition of scholarly practice exists within the literature. The variability in terms used to describe scholarly practice suggests that it is an overarching concept rather than a definable entity. There are similarities between scholarly practitioners and knowledge brokers regarding attributes and how scholarly practice is operationalized. Individuals engaged in the teaching, research and/or assessment of scholarly practice should make explicit their definitions and expectations for healthcare professionals.

PMID:36456756 | DOI:10.1007/s10459-022-10180-0

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