Usage and impact of open access articles

So we all love the principal of open access (OA) but how effective is it in getting your message out there and is it accessed a little or a lot?

Open access of course is a disruptive technology but it has been around for a while and continues to upset the subscription model for medical education publishers.

The cost of subscription, however, is increasingly forcing university libraries to cancel their subscriptions.

Many granting bodies mandate that the results of research are provided in open access format.

This study by Piwowar et al looks at a mind-boggling 300,000 articles across three streams to answer the questions:

What percentage of scholarly literature is open access and how does this vary depending on publisher, discipline and year?

Are OA papers more highly-cited than their pay for access counterparts?

The answers?

28% of all journal articles are freely available online.

OA articles receive 18% more citations than otherwise expected (lots of caveats there).

Read all about it here:

Find out more about legal, unpaid access to heaps of journals here:

And access the Directory of Open Access Journals here:


This fascinating paper by Henning et al is all about how students use social networking sites (SNS) and what can be done to assist them to think about the future and ensure that their online presence is in line with their professional aspirations.

Social media is great for communication but it also enables the blurring of personal and professional boundaries and that’s probably not a good thing.

Surprisingly, the millenials that took part in the study wanted guidance from those in authority (that’s you) to provide clarity about what were “the rules” of the profession.

They actually wanted formal teaching about this stuff, complimented by some peer discussion, practical demonstrations about how to manage and maximize their privacy settings and some scenario-based small group sessions.

Read all about it here:

Diagnosis and management of clinical reasoning difficulties Part 1 – supervision and diagnosis and Part 2 – management and remediation strategies

Ok. These two guides by Audetat et al are not exactly light reading but probably very worthwhile reading if you want to know more about how to help your registrar or student if they have clinical reasoning problems.

The table in part 2 is probably the most helpful information. It contains a list of key difficulties, main causes or enablers and examples of remediation strategies.

As an example:

Difficulty: building an overall picture of the clinical situation

Causes: lack of clinical experience and lack of appreciation of the importance of contextual factors, poor grasp of patient-centred care

Remediation: prompt the learner to think about the connections between different aspects of the clinical situation, encourage the learner to think about the patient with a longitudinal perspective, ask the learner to draw a concept map of the clinical situation and discuss with them.

Get all the details:

When I say clinical supervision….

The point of this little piece by Martin et al is to bring to your attention that there are differences between clinical supervision (supervision of colleagues) and educational supervision (supervision of registrars and students) and terms such as “intervision” and “guided supervision” not to mention “mentoring” and, as the authors suggest, we’re in a minefield!

Splitting hairs I reckon but see what you think yourself:

Masters degree for MEs

This paper by Tekian and Taylor heralds the setting of standards for master’s degrees in medical education and health professional education. The standards are in the format of the World Federation for Medical Education Standards (which guides the format of Australian Medical Council accreditation by the way).

The context is a bit different to Australia – the setting is where such courses are delivered to program directors who deliver medical education from universities and similar institutions.

But, there it is – a set of standards for delivering a masters program in medical and/or health professional education.

You read it here first:



Date reviewed: 05 September 2017

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