Posted April 6, 2011
By Aisling Gamble
Each year, the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC) chooses a recipient of the AFMC Award for Exemplary Contribution to Faculty Development in Canada, established to recognize an individual or a group in Canada who has made exceptional contribution in this area. For 2011, AFMC has chosen to recognize the Faculty of Medicine’s Dr. Lara Cooke.
Cooke, assistant professor of Neurology in the Department of Neurosciences and former assistant dean of Faculty Development, feels very lucky to have had the opportunity to work with amazing people to produce Faculty Development programs. “All these individuals and the leadership at the Faculty of Medicine have been incredibly energetic and supportive in helping me move this work forward to establish a presence for faculty development in Calgary.”
In describing what such an award means to the Faculty of Medicine, Cooke says the existence of a formal Faculty Development program means that its educational mandate is taken very seriously. At a national level, Cooke believes the recognition from AFMC puts the University of Calgary Faculty Development programs on the map along with some other very successful programs in Canada.
Receiving her medical degree and fellowship in Headache Medicine, and a Master’s of Medical Education all from the University of Calgary, Cooke’s current research interests lie primarily in the area of medical education in relation to her role in Faculty Development. Cooke has worked locally, nationally, and internationally to present research and curricular reform in the area of teaching communication skills to specialty residents. Other interests include enhancing self-efficacy of teachers of international medical graduates, understanding how medical students learn about medical professionalism, and using “deliberate practice” as an ideal model for faculty development.
Cooke will be recognized for her contributions at the Canadian Conference on Medical Education, to be held in Toronto in May 2011.