The new academic year is fast approaching and my first clinical supervising day in Exeter is just 3 weeks away. Over the last few days I have been pondering how I can help students to plan what they will be doing in their appointments. In practice we get so used to doing things in a certain routine that most appts don't need active planning. But at the start of your career you don't have the luxury of having repeated something hundreds of times and therefore everything you are doing feels new. Critical stages may occasionally get missed but also just as importantly it is easy to lose a lot of time with inefficient ordering of the many processes being carried out.
So today I am sharing an idea I will be testing with some students. It is a simple cribsheet to encourage individuals to really think about all the important separate things they plan to do and what order they should be done in.
I have deliberately kept the boxes small because I don't want an essay. Just a few words per process is needed. And as examples I have filled a couple in for how I would approach structuring my exams and a "normal" crown prep appt. As shown with the arrows this can also be used to indicate when I would normally take photos along the way or in a supervising situation when I would want the student to get me to check on progress before they carry on. They can of course seek my help at any other time but hopefully for some this could mean they get to work more independently than they otherwise would.
I am not suggesting this would need to be done for every appt but I am hoping that by doing it occasionally it may help them to get into the mindset of planning as well as looking for ways of making the most efficient use of their time, something I really wasn't very good at early on in my career.
If you have any feedback on this form before I actually put it into use I would happy to hear it, or if you think you would like to download it for your own use please feel free to do so. It can be found in my shared google drive folder via the link here:
Dr Chris Harper