Publication of Comprehensive Healthcare Simulation: Mastery Learning in Health Professions Education (McGaghie, WC, Barsuk, JH & Wayne DB, eds. Springer Nature Switzerland AG, 2020) is a signature achievement by the Northwestern Simulation team. The book summarizes the body of mastery learning education and research performed by Northwestern scholars over the past 15 years. The book begins with a critique of traditional clinical education including its origins, methods, and uneven learning outcomes. The next section covers the mastery learning model and its operational features including curriculum development, instruction based on deliberate practice, learner assessment, standard setting, implementation and management, feedback, and faculty development. The next six chapters address Mastery Learning in Action, case studies on mastery learning of such basic clinical skills as end-of-life communication, teamwork, surgical skills, bedside procedures, clinical emergencies, and readiness for residency. A chapter on translation of mastery learning outcomes acquired in the simulation laboratory to actual patient care practices and downstream patient outcomes speaks to key aspirational goals of clinical education. The book concludes with five chapters that map “The Road Ahead” for simulation-based mastery learning: milestones and entrustable professional activities, continuing professional education, return on investment, educational policy consequences, and opportunities and challenges. Health professions educators worldwide will find this book informative, engaging, and full of practical examples that tell how to make mastery learning come alive in clinical settings.
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