ASME this year provided another fantastic conference for anyone interested in medical education research. However, when LTSN requested a report, which outlined my experience of the event, I had to refer to my Limbs and Things bag, still stuffed full of paperwork, which luckily helped enormously to refresh my memory.
ASME was somewhat difficult to get to from Cornwall, but so is everywhere! I must admit, my first impressions of the halls of residence in Edinburgh were not good, mainly due to the long walk to the halls of residence from reception (with a huge suitcase - I nearly did myself an injury!). However, it did have an en-suite - so mightily relieved!
Andy Grant's workshop on reflective learning started my day with some stimulating discussions about the evidence supporting reflective learning (or should I say lack of evidence?). Then, onto Sam Leinster's welcome and the research papers.
I gave my first paper in this session and went last. Because of the mild levels of pre-presentation anxiety, I wasn't able to focus on the earlier presentations too well, unfortunately. Always the problem with going last, so apologies to Chris and the guys from Dundee.
Masochistically (or perhaps egotistically), I enjoyed presenting in this session and discussing my work. I suppose we've all given presentations at conferences or research seminar series where only a handful of people turn up and nobody asks questions - soul destroying. So, it was nice to present to a big audience and have lots of discussion.
Tuesday started with a hangover but this was quickly relieved by great plenaries by John Norcini and Lambert Schuwirth on assessment. It's really nice to hear these kinds of overviews given by such renowned experts in medical education. It was useful to hear such sensible and pragmatic approaches to assessment in an era where we're so obsessed with generalisability theory (I know because I too am obsessed by GT - but I am receiving medication for it).
The annual dinner was fabulous that evening. The setting at Edinburgh Castle was truly beautiful and I got to catch up with lots of people who I hadn't managed to speak to yet. Medical educators really are a great bunch, and there was plenty of food and wine and lots of good conversation.
Wednesday started with an impressive presentation from the Sir John Ellis Student Prize Winner. I then gave my last presentation in one of the parallel sessions on assessment before enjoying a brilliant and entertaining end to the conference, Brian's plenary. Not only did I laugh heartily at his very witty presentation but it was also incredibly informative. Self-assessment is such an important topic in medical education and is rarely addressed.
Thinking that the conference was over, I scuttled off to the airport - only to spend several more hours with conference delegates in the airport lounge bar and then on the plane. On a non-conference note I found myself sitting behind Jonathan Davies (Ex-Welsh rugby player turned rugby commentator) on the plane - a brush with fame. What more could a girl want from a conference?
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