BACKGROUND: Essential to the professional development of mentors is making explicit and critically challenging the knowledge and beliefs underpinning their mentoring practice. This paper reports on the development of a survey instrument called MERIT, MEntor Reflection InstrumenT, which was designed to support mentors' systematic reflection on the how, what and why of their practice.
METHODS: In 2019, a twenty-item survey instrument was developed and piloted. Initial validation data (N = 228) were collected by distributing the survey through the authors' network. An exploratory factor analysis (EFA) was conducted and internal consistency reliability coefficients were calculated.
RESULTS: The Principal Axis EFA with Direct Oblimin rotation (Delta = 0) resulted in four factors: 1) supporting personal development, 2) modelling professional development, 3) fostering autonomy, and 4) monitoring performance. The four factors explained 43% of the total variance of item scores. The Cronbach's alphas for the subscale scores were between .42 and .75.
CONCLUSIONS: The MERIT can help mentors reflect on their beliefs and professional knowhow. These reflections can serve as input for the faculty development initiatives mentors undertake, which may ultimately improve their knowledge and skills as a mentor.
- Systematic reflection
- Faculty development
- Personal interpretative framework
- Survey study