The 2018 World Federation of Chiropractic ACC Education Conference was held on 24-27 October in London. It resulted in several consensus statements developed by the attendees. I happen to know this from a short report that has just been published; it can be found here.
Of the 10 points made in this consensus, I find only the following noteworthy:
“Chiropractic education programs have an ethical obligation to support an evidence-based teaching and learning environment.”
Perhaps it is me – English is not my first language – but I find the phraseology used in this sentence strangely complicated and confusing. I have been a teacher of medical students for most of my life, but I am not sure what an ‘evidence-based teaching and learning environment’ is. I know what ‘evidence-based’ means, of course. However, what exactly is:
- a teaching environment?
- a learning environment?
- and how does ‘evidence-based’ apply to either of the two?
Is there evidence that some environments are better suited than others for teaching?
Is there evidence that some environments are better suited than others for learning?
I suppose the answer must be YES!
The environment, i. e. the space and conditions in which teaching and learning happen should, for instance, be/include:
- not cramped,
- not too cold,
- not too hot,
- equipped with ergometric chairs and desks,
- there should be visual aids,
- access to computers,
- a library,
- good mentoring and support,
So, the consensus of the education conference wanted to optimise the environmental conditions of teaching and learning for chiropractic lecturers and students? Most laudable, I must say!
But still, it seems like a missed opportunity for an ‘Education Conference’ not to have stated something about the content of teaching and learning. Personally, I find it a pity that they did not state: Chiropractic education programs have an ethical obligation to be evidence-based.
Or is that what they really wanted to say?
Naaahh … come to think of it … they cannot possibly make such a demand.
Because, in this case, they would have to teach students not to become chiropractors.