WORKSHOPS/SEMINARS AT RAWALPINDI MEDICAL COLLEGE
With the name of Almighty Allah Rawalpindi Medical College has inaugurated a Department of Medical Education since several years and this department is fully active to perform its different activities in different aspects. Conduction of workshops / seminars on different aspects for all departments related to medical faculty is one of the major activities of DME/RMC. Here we have a brief introduction regarding importance of workshops and seminars in our professional and academic life and also a data record of held workshops and seminars. We also provide the facility of information about upcoming and past workshops / seminars on our website.
WHAT IS A WORKSHOP AT RMC?
In general, a workshop is a single, short (although short may mean anything from 45 minutes to two full days) educational program designed to teach or introduce to participants practical skills, techniques, or ideas which they can then use in their work or their daily lives. Most workshops have several features in common:
BENEFITS OF WORKSHOPS AT RMC
- They were generally small, usually from 6 to 15 participants, allowing everyone some personal attention and the chance to be heard.
- They were often designed for people who are working together, or working in the same field.
- They were conducted by people who have real experience in the subject under discussion.
- They were often participatory,
- They were informal;
- They were time limited,
- They were self-contained.
Why choose a workshop, when we could use some other method like a study circle, a course, on-the-job training, etc.? Because there are a number of different ways to teach people things, and because people learn things in different ways, a workshop has some advantages (and some disadvantages, too, most notably the lack of time it provides) over these other methods that make it a good choice in certain circumstances.
WHEN A WORKSHOP IS REQUIRED AT RMC?
- A workshop provides a way to create an intensive educational experience in a short amount of time, when the time for a more comprehensive effort may not be available. Participants may be working, they may be too far apart to gather together regularly, or may simply be unwilling to commit large amounts of time. A workshop can introduce a new concept, spurring participants to investigate it further on their own, or can demonstrate and encourage the practice of actual methods.
- Its a great way to teach hands-on skills because it offers participants a chance to try out new methods and fail in a safe situation. Failure is often the best teacher, and failure in this instance does not carry a cost. At the same time, feedback, from both the presenter and peers in the group, helps a participant understand what he can do to avoid failure in a real situation.
- A workshop is a way for someone to pass on to colleagues ideas and methods that he has developed or finds important. Teaching a graduate course may not be possible, but he may be able to reach large numbers of people by conducting workshops in various situations.
- Especially for people who work together, a workshop can help to create a sense of community or common purpose among its participants.
A workshop, as explained above, is valuable in certain circumstances. When do those circumstances arise, and when might we choose to conduct a workshop over other methods of education or training? There are a number of situations in which a workshop would be the best choice:
The beginning of something new
The initial training of staff or volunteers.
The in-service or ongoing training of staff or volunteers.
The demonstration of a new concept.
The explanation of something to the public.
The availability of a knowledgeable presenter.
PROCESS OF CONDUCTING WORKSHOP AT RMC
There are three phases to conduct a workshop: planning, preparation, and implementation (actually doing it). In addition, once we were done, its important to follow up with participants to get feedback on the workshop, so we can improve it the next time. We will look at each of these phases separately. PLANNING Once we know what our topic will be, planning a workshop ultimately means figuring out what we want to do to guide participants through the experience, and what we hope they will learn from it. In order to do that, we have to consider a number of factors:
- Consider our topic.
- Consider our audience.
- Consider the workshop size.
- Consider the time available.
- Vary activities.
- Vary the seriousness of the material.
- Plan a break.
- Participants need time to talk and connect with one another.
- Consider the purpose of the workshop.
- Find out about the space we will be using, if possible.
- Bring everything we need.
- Arrange well beforehand for any equipment we will need.
- Make materials and hand-outs as attractive and interesting as possible so that participants will return to them.
- Be over prepared
- Make up an evaluation form
In the final phase of the workshop, we need to wrap things up and give participants a chance to react to what they were just been through. We may want to go through some formal activity for this purpose, or we may want to just throw out some questions and listen to what people have to say.
- Sum up and review agenda
- Revisit expectations
- Give participants a chance to sum up.
- Ask for feedback on the ideas, techniques, methods, etc. that you presented
- Collect evaluation forms
After the workshop is over, there are still a few loose ends to tie up.
- If we agreed to send anything to participants (materials, bibliographies, etc.) we do it as soon as possible, both so that we do not forget, and so the material is still fresh in people minds when they get it.
- If we have notes on the summation and feedback, we might want to type them up and send them to participants also, if they would be helpful to their understanding of the workshop.
- We go through the evaluations and our feedback notes soon after the workshop, so that its still fresh in your mind. What do most people think we might have done differently? What areas seemed particularly strong or particularly weak? This is the moment to think about what we will change the next time you conduct a workshop, and there should be a next time.
In order to conduct an effective and successful workshop, we need to address its planning, preparation, and implementation. As we plan, consider the workshops audience, its size, its length, its purpose, and our presentation options. Preparation includes logistics (managing the physical items involved, materials, equipment, etc.) and preparing psychologically as well. Finally, the implementation of the workshop includes attending to all three of its phases: introduction, substance, and closure. And we do not forget to follow up, both by fulfilling any promises and using feedback to redesign or change parts of the workshop so that our next one will be even better