Developing a dashboard to meet the needs of residents in a competency-based training program: A design-based research project


  • Robert Carey University of Saskatchewan
  • Grayson Wilson University of Saskatchewan
  • Venkat Bandi University of Saskatchewan
  • Debajyoti Mondal University of Saskatchewan
  • Lynsey Martin University of Saskatchewan
  • Rob Woods University of Saskatchewan
  • Teresa Chan McMaster University
  • Brent Thoma University of Saskatchewan



Background: Canadian specialty programs are implementing Competence By Design, a competency-based medical education (CBME) program which requires frequent assessments of entrustable professional activities. To be used for learning, the large amount of assessment data needs to be interpreted by residents, but little work has been done to determine how visualizing and interacting with this data can be supported. Within the University of Saskatchewan emergency medicine residency program, we sought to determine how our residents’ CBME assessment data should be presented to support their learning and to develop a dashboard that meets our residents’ needs.

Methods: We utilized a design-based research process to identify and address resident needs surrounding the presentation of their assessment data. Data was collected within the emergency medicine residency program at the University of Saskatchewan via four resident focus groups held over 10 months. Focus group discussions were analyzed using a grounded theory approach to identify resident needs. This guided the development of a dashboard which contained elements (data, analytics, and visualizations) that support their interpretation of the data. The identified needs are described using quotes from the focus groups as well as visualizations of the dashboard elements.

Results: Resident needs were classified under three themes: (1) Provide guidance through the assessment program, (2) Present workplace-based assessment data, and (3) Present other assessment data. Seventeen dashboard elements were designed to address these needs.

Conclusions: Our design-based research process identified resident needs and developed dashboard elements to meet them. This work will inform the creation and evolution of CBME assessment dashboards designed to support resident learning.


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Carey R, Wilson G, Bandi V, Mondal D, Martin L, Woods R, Chan T, Thoma B. Developing a dashboard to meet the needs of residents in a competency-based training program: A design-based research project. Can. Med. Ed. J [Internet]. 2020 Sep. 14 [cited 2024 Jun. 17];11(6):e31-e45. Available from:



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