General Practice Education: Context and Trends

  • Susan M. WearneEmail author
  • James B. Brown
Living reference work entry


General practitioners (GPs) provision of longitudinal, relationship-based, holistic care to people and communities contributes to cost-effective health systems. Current trends are an increase in complexity of GPs’ work as patients age and develop more chronic diseases, and there are increased options for diagnosis and treatment. Practice size has increased as has the number of different health professionals and learners who provide primary care.

Doctors who want to become GPs work in hospital and general practice as GP registrars. These training programs are often based on pragmatics and tradition rather than contemporary educational evidence or theory. Evidence shows that GP registrars learn most by working as GPs in practice under supervision, and there are questions about the relevance of hospital work as a junior doctor, to future work as a GP.

Trends in general practitioner training include early assessment to ensure training builds on strengths and targets educational need; a focus on learning in general practice under supervision, with external education designed complementarily; programmatic work-based assessment and demonstration of learning; and a final assessment process where GPs prove they have developed mastery of their craft.


General practice training General practice supervisors Learning in practice 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Health Workforce DivisionCommonwealth Department of HealthCanberraAustralia
  2. 2.Academic Unit of General PracticeAustralian National UniversityCanberraAustralia
  3. 3.Eastern Victoria GP TrainingChurchillAustralia
  4. 4.Gippsland Medical SchoolMonash University ChurchillAustralia

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