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The editorial discusses competency-based medical education. American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) has adopted the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) core competency construct as the guide that must be used in developing the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) programs in the near future. The real challenge for those involved in designing competency-based educational programs is to delineate the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that learners must acquire and to recognize that the expected level of performance within each domain will vary depending on the learner's stage of education and the speciality is learning. While the core competency construct has merit in ensuring that Graduate Medical Education (GME) programs will achieve certain educational outcomes, it is important to understand its limitations. Before allowing residents to complete their training, program directors and faculties must ensure to their satisfaction that the residents are capable of performing the complex, integrative tasks that are required to provide high-quality patient care. The true clinical competence of residents can only be determined by observing them providing patient care during the course of their training. Multiple-choice examinations and other assessment tools that focus on individual domains of practice are not enough. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).

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  • Michael E Whitcomb

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