Big Ideas Lecture Series  

The Big Ideas Lecture Series features lectures by content experts in technology, innovation and design. In a time of rapid technological and social innovation, it is essential to connect with "big thinkers" and experts – locally and globally – to analyze, critically appraise and design solutions to the pressing issues facing education and health care today.

Latest Big Ideas Lecture

  Wednesday, June 8, 2022
  12:00 pm to 1:00 pm
  Dr. Paula Rowland
  Future of the Health Professions

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The social, cultural, and political assumptions that surround the term "professional" have never been subject to such question. At stake is what we mean by professionalism, what it means to identify as a professional, and whether the concept of profession remains useful. These debates are central to understanding the future of healthcare work. Drawing from the sociology of the professions and recent case studies of changes in healthcare work, Dr. Paula Rowland will explore the dynamics of these debates and their implications. While emphasizing the ongoing and central role of health professions education in shaping the future of healthcare, she argues for an expansive understanding of professional learning that is inclusive of learning at work and through work. Drawing our attention to these broad systems of professional learning invites questions about our responsibilities and opportunities as educators and education scientists in what some have called a "post-professional" world. This talk will be of interest to healthcare providers, leaders, educators and all other stakeholders concerned with preserving the ideal of professionalism.

Dr. Paula Rowland  

Paula Rowland, PhD, is a Scientist at the Wilson Centre, MD Education, and The Institute for Education Research. Having started her career as an Occupational Therapist, Dr. Rowland became interested in the ways the places where professionals work shape what they can know, do, learn, and teach. This interest led to graduate studies in organizational development, culminating in a PhD in Human and Organizational Systems in 2013. Now, Dr. Rowland draws upon theories and concepts from sociology of the professions and sociologies of expertise to explore how professional work is changing in healthcare. This program of research will be of interest to educators and leaders concerned with patient engagement, the clinical learning environment, workplace learning, and continuing professional development. On a broader scale, this line of inquiry has implications for the future of the professions and the future of health professions education.

Past Big Ideas Lectures