The Education Consultants – Quick Tip: Planning Committee

Kate Hodgson and Jane Tipping, our Education Consultants, are here to help you develop your CE curriculum. Their Quick Tip for this issue is about forming a Planning Committee.

To learn more read on!

Quick Tip: Planning Committee

Forming a Planning Committee is the first formal step in strategic planning and development of a CE Program. A collaborative approach to planning CE activities has shown to be successful by forming a diverse, representative planning committee. Broad-based involvement could include representation from the:

  • Learners- members of the target audience
  • Speakers
  • Content experts,
  • Educational planners
  • Administrators.

The Planning Committee should reflect appropriate representation of the target audience. Membership on the Planning Committee should reflect the interdisciplinary and interprofessional target audience; the diversity of target audience practice types (academic, urban, rural); and range of professional training levels.

  • If the interprofessional target audience includes Family Physicians and Nurse Practitioners, Family Physicians and Nurse Practitioners must be included on the Planning Committee.
  • If the target audience includes practitioners from both academic centers and the community, the Planning Committee must include adequate representation from health care professionals working in the community setting.
  • If the target audience includes interns, residents, or fellows, the Planning Committee must include representatives from those graduate programs

More specifically, both the College of Family Physicians and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons stipulate that a member of their college must be on the Planning Committee to receive MainPro or MainCert accreditation, respectively.

Planning Committee members may work with the Course Director to develop and interpret needs assessments, choose effective learning and teaching methods, clarify curricular goals and specific learning objectives, select speakers and faculty, choose an appropriate venue, develop evaluation questions or outcome measures.

Representative Planning Committees help ensure that the educational needs of all segments of the target audience are identified and recognized and appropriately addressed. They help complete, validate, and interpret a gap analysis and needs assessment. A representative Planning Committee help ensure that the learning topic and experience is relevant to real life practice issues.

Diverse Planning Committees help ensure fiscal responsibility and transparency around funding and influence or bias.

Planning Committee members must provide full disclosure by proving personal information regarding potential conflict of interest.

Industry or sponsor representatives should not be members of the Planning Committee not should they attend meetings of the Planning Committee.