Close Menu

Health Professions Education Unit

The Medical Education Unit (MEU) was established in 2007 by the then Dean, Prof. A. McDonald. The mandate was to develop and implement medical education philosophy and practice in the undergraduate medical programme and to coordinate accreditation and quality assurance initiatives in response to a growing need.

Learn more about the HPEU by selecting the headings below.


The Medical Education Unit (MEU) was established in 2007 by the then Dean, Prof. A. McDonald. The mandate was to develop and implement medical education philosophy and practice in the undergraduate medical programme and to coordinate accreditation and quality assurance initiatives in response to a growing need.

The embryonic unit focused on staff training in broad aspects of medical education, while supporting educational activities, undergraduate curriculum development, department initiatives and research in medical education. Important liaisons and collaborations were established with the Instructional Support Services (ISS), Mona Information Technology Services (MITS) and the Medical Library.

Developments and achievements in medical education by the MEU since the inception have included the following key areas:

A. Staff Training in Medical Education Numerous workshops and capacity-building opportunities have been conducted at Mona and the clinical training sites for the MBBS Programme throughout Jamaica. These were facilitated by primarily local expertise but augmented with visiting scholars. The activities included training workshops on:

• Item writing
• Student assessment
• Utilisation of the Virtual Learning Environment (OurVLE) by the Instructional Support Services (ISS) of Mona Institute of Technology (MITS)
• Advanced Item Analysis
• Facilitator Training (case-based learning)
• Standard Setting
• Use of ICT in the classroom
• Course Coordinator training
• Teaching skills (with Instructional Development Unit, now the Centre for Excellence in Teaching & Learning [CETL]) in house and off campus

Several faculty members received support to uptake international scholarly activities and training:
• Conference attendance, in particular International Association of Medical Science Educators (IAMSE) and Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE)
• Formal courses at the University of Dundee, e.g. Dundee Discovery Courses, Diploma and Masters in Education, University of Dundee

B. Collaboration and Communication The success of the MEU is largely due to the collaboration with relevant expertise in higher education training and communication. These have included the following:
• MITS support for Student Tracking/STEMS
• ISS Training
• Library
• Working with the IDU
• Training of clinical faculty at Cornwall Regional Hospital
   o Case-based learning
   o Teaching Skills
   o ICT
Electronic Newsletter
   o A newsletter provided faculty with appropriate advances in medical education and reports on FMS activities

C. Support Educational Programmes
The MEU provided substantial expertise, academic and technical support to the following committees and initiatives:
• MB BS Curriculum Committee
• Mona Undergraduate Committee
• Staff-student Liaison Committee
• Respond to Dept. Requests
• Preparation for MB BS Regional Accreditation
• Participation in regional UWI Quality Assurance
• Cross-campus harmonization

D. Encourage Research in Medical Education
Through the creation of a Research Interest Group, the MEU contributed to scholarly activity in the FMS and UWI by virtue of:
• Output 2006-09
   o Publications (4)
   o Scholarly Conference Presentations (19)
      - Canada
      - USA
      - Holland

Further development of the unit was stymied with the departure in 2010 of the Deputy Dean Curriculum, Prof. JM Branday to his new position as Dean, FMS, Cave Hill, Barbados.
A series of events has however led to the critical need to re-think, re-establish, rebrand and expand the MEU into a Health Professions Education Unit (HPEU). These include among others:
• Development and expansion of programmes in the FMS, Mona [MBBS, Dentistry, Physical Therapy, Doctor of Pharmacy, Diagnostic Radiation, Nursing]
• Accreditation and quality assurance concerns among programmes
• Gap in curriculum and relevant medical education expertise and capacity
• Renewed interest and emphasis on Interprofessional collaboration in curriculum

The vision for this HPEU is to become a diverse, comprehensive Unit to fulfil the following overall objectives:
1. Faculty development in all health professions education
2. Improving curriculum management, research and evaluation across the health disciplines
3. Developing working models for social mission and inter-professional education
4. Leveraging educational technology across all programmes to enhance programme delivery
5. Innovative course development
6. Strengthening student support and tracking
7. Cross-campus collaboration in development of degree offerings in health professions education


Quality health professions’ education for all and by all


To promote and enhance capacity for quality health professions’ education in Faculty of Medical Sciences, UWI Mona teaching and learning community


The promotion, development, implementation and monitoring of health professions’ education initiatives with special emphasis on faculty and staff continued professional development, research in health professions education, accreditation and quality enhancement, curriculum development, and interprofessional collaboration

  1. To promote, plan and implement programmes that enhance the capacity of all teaching staff, in important aspects of Health Professions’ Education
  2. To increase research output in health professions’ education by providing encouragement and opportunities for teaching staff to plan and implement research projects
  3. To develop quality monitoring systems in the Faculty of Medical Sciences that promote continuous quality improvement across educational programmes and improve responsiveness to the needs of accreditation agencies
  4. To facilitate and participate in regular monitoring and timely reviews of programme curricula in the Faculty of Medical Sciences
  5.  To develop and implement strategies to foster inter-professional teaching and learning

The work of the HPEU will focus on the following four areas:

  1. Staff development and training
  2. Faculty mentoring
  3. Research in health professions education
  4. Accreditation and quality enhancement
  5. Curriculum development

Additionally, Interprofessional Collaboration will be promoted throughout all four areas

We work with the teaching and learning community in the following ways:

  • Consultations
  • Course Observations
  • Presentations
  • Workshops
  • Conferences
  • Research
  • Publications and Resource Materials
  • Collaborations
  • Mentoring


The Head of the HPEU will be the Director of Medical Education (DME) who will report directly to the Dean of the Faculty


The Unit will initially be staffed as indicated below

•             Director of Medical Education (Head) [Professor Russell Pierre]

•             Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist [TBA]

•             Quality Enhancement Manager [TBA]

•             Administrative Officer [TBA]

•             Digital Media/Information Technology/Public Relations Specialist [TBA]

•             Secretarial and technical support staff [Mrs Nikesha Smith-Blackwood; Mr Dwayne Redwood]

In addition, it is proposed to identify Liaison Officers[1] from each Health Profession. These persons will serve as key points of reference to generate interest, disseminate information and communicate with members of their respective programmes on matters related to health education.

The HPEU in 2018/2019 will be a Unit within the Deans Office, Faculty of Medical Sciences. Administrative, secretarial and technical support will be provided by personnel already in place in the Deans Office. Key expertise in Monitoring & Evaluation and Quality Enhancement will subsequently be added to the staff complement. The current university appointed Quality Enhancement Officer for the Faculties of Medical Sciences, will be a resource person for the HPEU. It is envisioned that a dedicated structure will house the HPEU in the very near future.


Faculty of Medical Sciences, Mona

  • Deputy Deans, in particular:
    • Teaching & Learning
    • Student Success
    • Educational Technology
    • Graduate and Research
  • Programme Directors for Dentistry, Doctor of Pharmacy, Nursing, Diagnostic Radiation, Physical Therapy, Bachelor in Basic Medical Sciences
  • Course Coordinators

Mona Campus

  • Campus Quality Assurance Unit
  • Coordinator Graduate Programmes
  • School of Education (FHE)

Cross Campus/University Centre

  • Directors of Medical Education
  • Campus Deans
  • FMS Quality Enhancement Officer
  • PVC Board for Undergraduate Studies
  • PVC Graduate Studies
Top of Page