, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 1-4
Date: 30 Oct 2012

Making the horse drink: use of mini-CEX in an assessment for learning view

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Recently a very interesting study by Alberta Alves de Lima and co-authors was published in Advances in Health Sciences Education; taking the mini-CEX to the ‘lab’ to study in more controlled circumstances the contribution of the various wanted and unwanted factors to the scores (Alves de Lima et al. 2012). Their findings are in accordance with most findings in this domain which state that between 7 and 11 observations would suffice to achieve acceptable reliabilities (Williams et al. 2003). This is important as they have added another important piece to the puzzle of the quality of this method.

It would not be unfair to conclude that, so far, we are okay concerning reliability and construct validity of mini-CEX, but I cannot help thinking there is more. Quite frankly, I think this has to do with my own difficulties with using an instrument almost exclusively for testing purposes despite its considerable potential to help optimising learning in an educational context. If I say “learning”

This comment refers to the article available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10459-011-9343-y.