InspirE5: a participatory, internationally informed framework for health humanities curricula in health professions education

Background Reporting on the effect of health humanities teaching in health professions education courses to facilitate sharing and mutual exchange internationally, and the generation of a more interconnected body of evidence surrounding health humanities curricula is needed. This study asked, what could an internationally informed curriculum and evaluation framework for the implementation of health humanities for health professions education look like? Methods The participatory action research approach applied was based on three iterative phases 1. Perspective sharing and collaboration building. 2. Evidence gathering 3. Development of an internationally relevant curriculum and evaluation framework for health humanities. Over 2 years, a series of online meetings, virtual workshops and follow up communications resulted in the production of the curriculum framework. Results Following the perspective sharing and evidence gathering, the InspirE5 model of curriculum design and evaluation framework for health humanities in health professions education was developed. Five principal foci shaped the design of the framework. Environment: Learning and political environment surrounding the program. Expectations: Graduate capabilities that are clearly articulated for all, integrated into core curricula and relevant to graduate destinations and associated professional standards. Experience: Learning and teaching experience that supports learners’ achievement of the stated graduate capabilities. Evidence: Assessment of learning (formative and/or summative) with feedback for learners around the development of capabilities. Enhancement: Program evaluation of the students and teachers learning experiences and achievement. In all, 11 Graduate Capabilities for Health Humanities were suggested along with a summary of common core content and guiding principles for assessment of health humanities learning. Discussion Concern about objectifying, reductive biomedical approaches to health professions education has led to a growing expansion of health humanities teaching and learning around the world. The InspirE5 curriculum and evaluation framework provides a foundation for a standardised approach to describe or compare health humanities education in different contexts and across a range of health professions courses and may be adapted around the world to progress health humanities education.