Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Social Media as a CME tool cookbook

Some recipes for CME using social media. There's been Tweeting about it so I thought I'd do a cookbook. A bit tongue-in-cheek I know but any others want to share some recipes or flame grill any of these?



network of health professionals in same therapeutic area
a couple of experts in that therapeutic area
2 or 3 facilitators
access to some sample clinical performance data
one secure area on the web for posting anonymised clinical data
weekly email summary tool (aggregating the contributions)
additional media stimulant to aid recruitment


Organise a social meeting for the network (via voice / video / chat conference) so that they can get to know each other and offer the additional media if you have it available as an inducement. You may want to use a task as some sort of ice breaker (see Social Media Cocktails below). Allow to mix for 1 week.

Post the sample data onto the secure area. Using the data as an example ask participants to debate which area they want to explore for performance gaps in their practice. This could be done via a #TweetUp cocktail (see below). Leave to cook for 1 week but try to close on consensus early.

With the priority performance gaps identified organise another debate on the interventions, the outcome measurements and timescales. This may require other collaborative tools such as Wikis, discussion fora, Google Docs, conferencing technology, blogs. Organise several 'meet the expert' sessions so that the ideas can be discussed. Keep stirring and remembering to season at weekly intervals with an email summary that includes any offshoots that the network may have developed. This could take a number of weeks. Aim to whisk (i.e. encourage) the participants into some task force or even a community of practice.

Decide a mechanism (blogs, Twitter etc.) for flagging up the progress of each participant. Include these in the weekly summaries. Organise weekly 'show and tell' meetings, preferably synchronous. Eventually everyone (or at least those who will complete) will have the chance to present their experience of the intervention and the outcomes.

When fully cooked present as a document / blog / YouTube / SlideShare. If your CME accreditation system allows present this as evidence of you work at your appraisal else, use it as an example to lobby for its inclusion in future years.

Topic Catchup Snack


1 fashionable topic
1 scribe
1 facilitator
1 expert (optional)
case problems in the fashionable topic
several participants


Convene the participants in your favourite social media. Negotiate a draft agenda and mechanism for the discussion - 1 hour synchronous or 1 week asynchronous for example. Post the first case problem and debate. The scribe keeps a record of all the points raised. Either post another case from up your sleeve or invite others to contribute experiences of their own. Discuss, scribe, reflect. Continue until time is up.

CME microblogged nuggets


1 or more tireless enthusiasts
1 archiving mechanism
1 suitable context
several listeners


Choose your context. This could be hijacking another teaching session or conference. It could be a particular research paper or series of papers in a journal. It could be any sort of event physical or virtual. Choose a hashtag. The tireless enthusiasts microblog on the context in question using the agreed hasthag. The listeners receive, reflect, repost, and throw in questions and points of view to further encourage the already enthusiastic microbloggers.

McNugget digestif


the archive of a CME microblogged nuggets session
several participants


As a group reflect on the CME nuggets and pull together the main learning points. Discuss how they can be put into practice. Complete a fuller blog of the whole experience.

Social Media Cocktails

6 degrees of freedom ice breaker. This recipe is blatantly stolen from CPSquare. The facilitator makes a list of participants and assigns them another participant who they have to link to. However, the links must go through 5 other participants. So, for example, two people who share a hobby of cycling, or work in the same City have a link. The task is to find such links between you and the person you are assigned through 5 others. You link to #1, #1 links to #2, #2 links to #3 ... #5 links to the person you are assigned. This is quite a challenge. It basically involves cyberstalking your fellow participants (but in a wholesome bonding sort of way). Leave to mix for at least 1 week.

#TweetUp. Assign a hashtag to your discussion and a time. Invite everyone to make suggestions for an agenda. You could use an open Google Doc for this. Be strict with time. You need to experience them a few times to fully understand the dynamics of this particular cocktail.

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