266918 Experience Documentation in Assessing Professional Practice: Lessons from Awarding Advanced Certification to Health Education Specialists

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 : 1:30 PM - 1:50 PM

Stephen Gambescia, PhD, MEd, MBA, MHum, MCHES , Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
Dixie Dennis, PhD, MCHES , College of Graduate Studies, Austin Peay State University, Clarksville, TN
Linda Lysoby, MS, MCHES , Executive Director, National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc, Whitehall, PA
W. William Chen, PhD, CHES , Health Education and Behavior, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Background: Upon initiation of any licensure, registration, or certification within a profession, policy makers for the process have to consider, and if so under what parameters, certification of experienced practitioners currently working in the field. The National Commission for Health Education Credentialing (NCHEC) offered a one-time experience documentation opportunity (EDO), for those currently certified as health education specialists. Method: Important decisions were made on the range of structures, processes, and policies in introducing a new credential, including a one-time offering of health educators to demonstrate advanced practice via documentation. To provide documentation of practice and have two recommenders attest to this practice moves the assessment of practitioners higher on Bloom's Taxonomy of learning, as the exercise moves beyond a low level knowledge recall and application stage to one of comprehending, applying, and synthesizing learned knowledge. Results: This presentation explains the rationale for policies, procedures, and best practices in administering the EDO process. This can be instructive to other disciplines that may be similarly situated in understanding a standard practice in a profession. This process demonstrates a way to validate a professional's understanding of the competencies, as well as who judges and approves this understanding through a three-tiered review process: (1) practitioner; (2) recommender who testifies to practice of applicant; and (3) certifying body review. Implications: Opportunities and limitations of using an EDO process will be discussed.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Ethics, professional and legal requirements
Other professions or practice related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Name the components of an experience documentation opportunity that could be used to validate practice in a health or other profession. Identify areas of consideration that a quality assurance system needs if implementing an experience documentation process. Explain opportunities and limitations of an experience documentation process, given the case presented by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing.

Keywords: Certification, Quality Assurance

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the executive director for the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing for 15 years. I have been involved in the experience documentation opportunity for health education specialists process, in this role.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.