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Peer Support of a Faculty “Writers' Circle” Increases Confidence and Productivity in Generating Scholarship

Published:January 27, 2015DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.acra.2014.12.006

      Rationale and Objectives

      Publishing is critical for academic medicine career advancement. Rejection of manuscripts can be demoralizing. Obstacles faced by clinical faculty may include lack of time, confidence, and optimal writing practices. This study describes the development and evaluation of a peer-writing group, informed by theory and research on faculty development and writing.

      Materials and Methods

      Five clinical-track radiology faculty members formed a “Writers' Circle” to promote scholarly productivity and reflection on writing practices. Members decided to work with previously rejected manuscripts. After members' initial meeting, interactions were informal, face to face during clinical work, and online. After the first 6 months, an anonymous survey asked members about the status of articles and evaluations of the writing group.

      Results

      Ten previously rejected articles, at least one from each member, were submitted to the Circle. In 6 months, four manuscripts were accepted for publication, five were in active revision, and one was withdrawn. All participants (100%) characterized the program as worth their time, increasing their motivation to write, their opportunities to support scholarly productivity of colleagues, and their confidence in generating scholarship.

      Conclusions

      Peer-support writing groups can facilitate the pooling of expertise and the exchange of recommended writing practices. Our peer-support group increased scholarly productivity and provided a collegial approach to academic writing.

      Key Words

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