Research & Scholarly Activities

Committed to discovery

At Continuing Professional Development, we understand that your education is more of than taking workshops and studying. We’ve developed a mission that also places a strong emphasis on how health professionals learn, identifying gaps in practice, and the best approaches to supporting excellence in health care.

Our focus on research enables us to develop and provide:

  • new models for continued learning and professional development;
  • assessments of educational outcomes;
  • evaluations of the impact of our programs and innovations; and
  • explorations of personal, professional, organizational and system factors that influence educational outcomes.

Our projects

We are currently working on a wide variety of research and educational innovations. Recent projects include:

  • A comprehensive evaluation of the Academic Detailing Service funded by the Drug Evaluation Alliance of Nova Scotia
  • Testing an evidence based model for facilitating performance feedback and improvement in residency education: what works and why?
  • Remediation in resident physicians in collaboration with the Postgraduate Medical Education
  • Program evaluation of the CAT and RAT courses
  • Evaluation of a simulated communication skills program for Choosing Wisely Canada recommendations

For more information
Click on the researchers below to find out more information about their research interests and publications.

Our researchers

Dr. Michael Allen


    - Evidence-based practice
    - The Katie program


Jin M, Naumann T, Regier L, Bugden S, Allen M, Salach L, et al. A brief overview of academic detailing in Canada: another role for pharmacists. Can Pharm J (Ott). 2012; 145(3):142-146. (Article via NLM)

Allen M, Kelly K, Fleming K. Uncertainty about the systolic blood pressure target in people with diabetes. Can Fam Physician. 2013; 59(2):128-31. (Article via NLM)

Allen M, Kelly K, Fleming I. Hypertension in elderly patients: recommended systolic targets are not evidence based. Can Fam Physician. 2013; 59(1):19-24. (Article via NLM)

Dr. Patrick Croskerry

Please see his Faculty Profile for details


  • Clinical decision making
  • Medical education reform
  • Evolutionary psychology
  • Affective de-biasing
  • Cognitive de-biasing
  • Critical thinking
  • Shift work and fatigue
  • Diagnostic failure


Dr. Lara Hazelton

    - Faculty development
    - Leadership
    - Education scholarship

Recent publications:

Hazelton, L. (2017). Crossing the Threshold: Physician leadership and liminality. Canadian Journal of Physician Leadership, 4(2):47-49.

Hazelton, L., Allen, M., MacLeod, T., LeBlanc, C., Boudreau, M. (2016). Assessing Clinical Faculty Understanding of Statistical Terms Used to Measure Treatment Effect and Their Application to Teaching. Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions, 36(4):278-283.

Hazelton, L., Delva, N. (2016).  Exploring the Intersection of Mental Health and Humanities:  the Dalhousie Psychiatry Student Writing Competition. Academic Psychiatry40(2):337-8.


Dr. Constance LeBlanc

    - Polypharmacy in long-term care
    - The hidden curriculum
    - Knowledge translation


LeBlanc C, Beaty L. The resident in difficulty or the difficult resident? In: Bandiera G, Dath D, editors. The Royal College program directors handbook. A practical guide for leading an exceptional program. Ottawa, ON: Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada; 2014. Ch. 14.

LeBlanc C, Chan B, Murphy N. Does your dog bite? Assessing and managing common animal bites. Canadian Journal of Diagnosis. 2016 Mar; 33(3).

LeBlanc C, Ross C. Mentorship for women in medicine. Dal Med J. 2012; 39(1): 33 - 35. (Article via DMJ)

Dr. Anna MacLeod

Please see her Faculty Profile for details


  • Distributed medical education
  • Learning and technology
  • Social issues in medical education
  • Sociomaterial approaches to medical education
  • Cadaver-based simulation


Heather MacLeod


  • Program evaluation and learner assessment: patient-doctor communication skills training – undergraduate and postgraduate medical education
  • Residency Education- Strategies for Competency Based Medical Education for the CanMED’s Communicator Role.
  • Communication skills curriculum development – the dynamics of OSCE case writing, e-learning modules, role modeling
  • Patient-doctor communication skills training for the Choosing Wisely paradigm in Canadian Health Care
  • Impact of the Medical Humanities Program participation for medical learners


  • Exploring language for Choosing Wisely conversations
  • A qualitative study of faculty perspectives on the experience of teaching communication skills in the skilled clinician unit for first year medical students
  • Assessing the effectiveness of an e-learning module developed for PIER 2 Communication Skills Training on Explanation, Planning & Shared Decision-Making in the Medical Interview
  • Medical Students’ Perceptions of their Communication Skills Training
  • A qualitative study exploring the experiences of medical learners participating in the Dalhousie Faculty of Medicine’s Medical Humanities Program

Tanya MacLeod

- Appropriate prescribing in the frail elderly in long-term care facilities across the Atlantic provinces

Dr. Joan Sargeant

Please see her Faculty Profile for details


    - Knowledge translation
    - Self-assessment
    - Feedback in health education


Urquhart R, Sargeant J, Grunfeld E. Exploring the usefulness of two conceptual frameworks for understanding how organizational factors influence innovation implementation in cancer care. J Contin Educ Health Prof. 2013; 33(1):48-58. (Abstract)

Sargeant J. Qualitative research part II: participants, analysis, and quality assurance. J  Grad Med Educ. 2012; 4(1):1-3. (Article via NLM)

Urquhart R, Kendell C, Sargeant J, Buduhan G, Johnson P, Rayson D, et al. How do surgeons decide to refer patients for adjuvant cancer treatment? Protocol for a qualitative study. Implement Sci. 2012; 7:102. (Article via NLM)

Kitto S, Bell M, Peller J, Sargeant J, Etchells E, Reeves S, et al. Positioning continuing education: boundaries and intersections between the domains continuing education, knowledge translation, patient safety and quality improvement. Adv Health Sci Educ Theory Pract. 2013; 18(1):141- 156. (Abstract)

Dr. Wendy Stewart

Please see her Faculty Profile for details


  • Curriculum
  • Humanities in medical education
  • Undergraduate medical education
  • Hidden curriculum
  • Professional identity
  • Professionalism