Training the Trainers

In September, the ACC conducted research among 270 members of the Cardiovascular Training Section in order to better understand and support the unique needs of Training Directors, Coordinators, and Residents. According to the survey, professional development opportunities, staying current on changing requirements and regulations and networking opportunities are the primary ways in which ACC's Cardiovascular Training Section provides the most value to its members.

More than three quarters of the members (77%) report that they participate in the ACC training section in order to keep current on training issues. Members also note promoting innovation in cardiovascular training (60%) and staying up-to-date on regulatory issues (57%) are benefits of section participation. The more tangible social aspects of the section also keep members engaged, with networking at 52% and opportunities for collaboration at 49%. Not surprisingly, training directors see live programs as the most effective form of educational communication with 42% ranking this first in effectiveness; email ranks second at 25%; and social media (e.g., Twitter) is seen as the least effective (1%).

Given the value of live meetings, it is not surprising to find that most CV Training Section members (77%) have been able to participate in a live ACC program in the past three years. Cost, scheduling conflicts, size of meeting, and preferring specialized meetings are the primary attendance barriers that are cited by the two-in-five (22%) section members unable to attend an ACC live program.

Section members volunteer a wide range of suggestions for desired educational topics, including faculty development on training, mentorship/career development for trainees, program development and access to a centralized resource repository. When probed on specific topics, developing centralized resources (74%) and updates on current changes (74%) are the two most important qualities that members desire from the Section. Interpreting training guidelines (63%), interaction with other sections (56%), education on teaching (56%), mentorship (54%), networking (52%) and advocacy (51%) are also very important for at least half of the section members.

Moving forward, the insights from the survey will lay a defined roadmap for the College to meet the needs of Cardiovascular Training Section members.

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