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Solution Focused Learning

SFL Booklet (239KB) [download]
SFL Synopsis (20KB) [download]

Briefly describe the activity and its purpose.

We conduct quarterly solution-focused learning (SFL) sessions, which are an application of problem-based learning, with a local family who has a child or teen with a disability. Through these class sessions, trainees research most of the content areas required or recommended by Maternal and Child Health Bureau. The additional content areas are addressed through lectures or service-learning experiences. This educational method allows faculty to observe trainees from a range of disciplines over the course of the year. Through SFL, which requires active engagement, we have found trainee motivation for the classroom component of LEND to greatly increase. Each year, trainees rate this the most significant part of their LEND experience. Trainees interview each family two times, select learning issues to research and present to their peers, and collaborate in interdisciplinary teams to find solutions to challenges the family and child may be encountering. A third meeting with each family culminates in trainees presenting their findings. This mutually beneficial exchange is enhanced through telecommunication. Our trainees in Hattiesburg (MS) and two other cities in Arkansas outside of Little Rock participate through video conferencing with the family.

What are the expected learning outcomes for trainees?

Trainees will be able to: (1) explain a range of conditions/diagnoses and how the conditions impact the child and family, (2) apply strategies for lifelong learning, (3) describe the contributions of other disciplines to the health care team, (4) teach other professionals and trainees, and (5) apply learning to real life cases and synthesize learning into the development of plans of care.

Briefly describe the positive impacts this activity has had on trainees.

This activity has led to: (1) enhanced engagement of trainees in learning process, (2) better understanding of other disciplines, (3) increased cohesion of clinical teams, (4) expertise in collaborative development of plans of care, and (5) enhanced exposure to and understanding of systems and services available to families.

Briefly describe any lessons learned or challenges associated with implementing this activity.

Since the majority of class sessions are devoted to SFL, faculty must monitor coverage of the full scope of topics to be covered in the LEND curriculum. Faculty then suggest additional learning issues related to the family that address content areas that otherwise are receiving limited attention.

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