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2012 Alpha Omega Alpha Robert J. Glaser Distinguished Teacher Award

Brian D. Hodges, M.D., Ph.D., University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine

Brian HodgesBefore entering medical school, Brian D. Hodges, M.D., Ph.D., had not thought much about how medicine was taught. “I just assumed teaching was teaching,” he said. He quickly learned that not all teaching is created equal. “I became interested in why some of the educational experiences I had were very good and some were not so good.” Discovering the answers to these questions, and advancing the science of medical education, became the passion of Dr. Hodges’ career.

Dr. Hodges currently serves as professor of psychiatry at the University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine and vice president of education for the University Health Network. He also is a scientist and the Richard and Elizabeth Currie Chair in Health Professions Education Research at the Wilson Centre for Research in Education at the University of Toronto.

“Brian Hodges is first and foremost an educator,” says Catharine Whiteside, M.D., Ph.D., dean of the University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine. Dr. Hodges has taught a wide variety of health professions students in addition to medical students across the continuum of medical education. His courses cover topics ranging from the measurement of competence to qualitative research methods and cross-cultural issues in medical education. Dr. Hodges is the recipient of numerous national-level teaching awards.

At the Wilson Centre, which he directed from 2002 to 2011, Dr. Hodges helps lead one of the largest centers for health professional education research in the world. The center works to foster the discovery and application of new knowledge relevant to advancing health care education and practice. “His research, scholarship, and leadership roles are all undertaken in service to advancing medical education and holding it accountable to the highest possible standards for the benefit of learners, patients, and communities,” says Dean Whiteside.

Dr. Hodges has advocated for seminal change in medical education, including a balance between the traditional, four-year model of medical education and an outcomes-based approach focused on demonstrable clinical skills and learning objectives. Dr. Hodges calls the new model “i-Docs”—adapted, like Apple’s iDevices, to learners’ needs and desires. He suggests that the best approach is not to discard the old model entirely but to integrate the best features of old and new.

Acknowledged as a leader in medical education and medical education scholarship both at home and abroad, Dr. Hodges has worked with medical schools and licensure organizations across Europe, Asia, and Africa, as well as the Middle East and New Zealand. From 2004 to 2008, he served as chair of evaluation for the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, overseeing assessment in Canada’s 62 specialty programs. R.M. Harden, M.D., general secretary of the Association for Medical Education in Europe, describes Dr. Hodges as one of the “leading stars in medical education.”

Dr. Hodges earned his B.A. and M.D. degrees from Queen’s University. He completed his M.Ed. and Ph.D. degrees in higher education at the University of Toronto.

Alpha Omega Alpha Robert J. Glaser Distinguished Teacher Award

The Alpha Omega Alpha Robert J. Glaser Distinguished Teacher Awards were initiated by AΩA in 1988 to provide national recognition to faculty members who have distinguished themselves in medical student education.