A Delphi study to construct a CanMEDS competence based inventory applicable for workplace assessment

Nele R. M. Michels*, Joke Denekens, Erik W. Driessen, Luc F. Van Gaal, Leo L. Bossaert, Benedicte Y. De Winter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: During workplace based learning students develop professional competences and an appropriate performance. To gain insight in the learning process and to evaluate competences and performance, assessment tools are essential and need to be of good quality. We aimed to construct a competence inventory applicable as an instrument to measure the content validity of workplace based assessment tools, such as portfolio. Methods: A Delphi study was carried out based on the CanMEDS Roles Framework. In three rounds, experts (N = 25-30) were invited to score the key competences per CanMEDS role on relevance (6-point Likert-scale), and to comment on the content and formulation bearing in mind its use in workplace based assessment. A descriptive analysis of relevances and comments was performed. Results: Although all competences were scored as relevant, many comments pointed at a lack of concrete, transparent and applicable descriptions of the key competences for the purpose of assessment. Therefore, the CanMEDS roles were reformulated in this Delphi procedure as concrete learning outcomes, observable and suitable for workplace based assessment. Conclusions: A competence based inventory, ready for validating workplace based assessment tools, was constructed using a Delphi procedure and based on a clarification and concretisation of the CanMEDS roles.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86
JournalBMC Medical Education
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sept 2012


  • Portfolio
  • Medical education
  • Content validity
  • CanMEDS roles
  • CanMEDS competences
  • Workplace assessment
  • Delphi study
  • Competence inventory

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