Journal Notes: A Recap of JGME’s Experience at the AAMC

December 1, 2022
JGME editors and staff at the AAMC meeting in November 2022 JGME Managing Editor Jean Mattes at the ICRE Conference in October 2022
JGME editors and staff at the AAMC meeting in November 2022
JGME Managing Editor Jean Mattes at the ICRE Conference in October 2022

The JGME Conference Booth is Back In-Person with a New Message
The Journal of Graduate Medical Education (JGME) is thrilled to have a presence in-person once again at national and international conferences, with two recent appearances at October’s International Conference on Residency Education in Montreal, Quebec, and the American Association of Medical Colleges conference in early November in Nashville, Tennessee. These were the first in-person meetings the team attended since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Editors and staff members at the new JGME booth described the palpable joy they witnessed in attendees as they saw colleagues for the first time off-screen in years. The upgraded booth showed off JGME’s new logo and attracted considerable traffic with the message: JGME: Practical. Engaging. Open Access. Anyone stopping by could see all three elements of that message in action.

Practical – Some of JGME’s most practical articles are the one-page Rip Outs, which in the days of print-only publication were designed to be literally ripped out and tacked to the wall for easy reference. The display was able to emulate that spirit by featuring printed copies and links to where they can be found online. As expected, with topics like patients as sources of microaggressions and how to turn program evaluation into scholarly activity, they were very popular with those looking for hands-on educational advice.

Engaging – We wanted to make sure that any conversation starting at our booth continued online, and that any paper article taken home would lead to a relationship with us. QR codes at our booth took attendees straight to places where they can follow the journal—on Twitter and LinkedIn—and well as to the journal’s very successful podcast, Hot Topics in MedEd, where readers can hear authors engage with each other in their own voices.

Open Access –A very common question about the journal being open access is: “Do you charge authors to submit?” And the answer is no! The journal’s staff and editorial board are grateful to the ACGME for allowing the journal to flourish as an editorially independent and peer-reviewed journal without having to charge authors as many other open access journals do. The JGME booth gave attendees multiple ways to access content, all of which is available for free without a subscription.

AAMC Sessions and Journal Topics
Beginning with an inspiring opening plenary featuring Drs. Cornell West and Robert George on resurrecting civil discourse, sessions at this year’s AAMC meeting were informative and sometimes emotionally powerful presentations, making clear that many of the issues at the forefront of medical education are already being tackled in the pages of the journal. Below are a few examples.

Combatting Bias in Peer Review Processes: Identity, Equity, and Inclusive Excellence
This interactive workshop addressed three sources of bias in peer review: 1) Confirmation bias, or the tendency to interpret new evidence as confirmation of one's existing beliefs; 2) Bias around the characteristics of the authors or reviewers, such as race, gender, or county of origin; and 3) Bias regarding prestige, such as author institutional affiliation. While JGME has published quite a bit on bias in teaching assessments, bias in residency interviews, and implicit bias training, an editorial in the October issue, A Welcome to International Authors, will address JGME’s commitment to addressing  editorial bias (i.e., bias that arises from composition of journal editorial boards), which contributes to the underrepresentation of authors from low- and middle-income countries.

Innovative Approaches to Addressing Interview Hoarding in the Residency Selection Process
This session addressed the problem of so-called “super applicants” having the greater share of residency interviews, making it more difficult for others to be seen by as many programs. One unique JGME article, The Residency Match: Escaping the Prisoner's Dilemma, explores this problem through the lens of game theory. A scoping review in the journal also explores the literature proposing systems-level reforms to the resident selection process. Session leaders discussed the effects of interview caps in ophthalmology programs from both a program director’s and an applicant’s perspective. Look out for an article in JGME’s upcoming December issue on what is being learned from the 2021 ophthalmology match.

Addressing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Clinical Care
Abstracts were presented on: 1) constructing a culturally conscious dermatology image collection; 2) racial bias in diagnosing sickle cell disease; and 3) discovering in a simulation lab the connection between implicit bias and medical decision-making. At the heart of these diverse approaches lies the issue of bias. In addition to a recent Rip Out on a practical approach to implicit bias training and another  on implementing culture change in diversity, equity, and inclusion, JGME has a rich and continually growing collection of articles on diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice that highlight what is being done in graduate medical education to address these issues, as well as the work that still needs to be done.

As the 2023 ACGME Annual Educational Conference approaches, JGME cannot wait to return to Nashville in February and to bring its practical, engaging, and open access content to the graduate medical education community, both in-person and around the world. We’ll see you then—and there!

Guest blogger Kevin Gladish is an editorial associate on the staff of the Journal of Graduate Medical Education. He’s been at the ACGME since 2016, and is also a performer, writer, and storyteller.