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Meeting Information


February 20, 2013



Attending:  James Fiore, Toby Vandemark, co-chairs; , Rod Campbell, Jyothi Holla, Ed Kennedy, Jen Michael, Alex Minkofsky, Tarang Shah, Carl Singer, Mike Zarski.

Agenda Items

1 Review minutes of last meeting

The minutes were accepted.

2 Competency framework update

Valerie provided an update on the Competency Framework. The MedBiquitous Competency Framework standard allows competency frameworks to serve as the backbone of education and assessment. The Competency Framework allows sets of competencies to be expressed electronically. Then educators can link curriculum, educational resources, assessments, and assessment results to the competency framework. Organizations that have created competency frameworks can use the standard to electronically publish their competency framework. Then other organizations can import the framework into their systems. The framework can also be used to facilitate search and discover of relevant resources, curriculum management, competency documentation, and cross mapping with other competency frameworks.

The Competency Object specification provides a common format for the individual statement of learning or performance expectations. The competency framework expresses hierarchical and non-hierarchical relationships among the competencies in a framework. There are many metadata fields to describe versioning of competency frameworks and objects. The Competency Framework was approved as an ANSI standard in October of 2012.

James summarized that the Competency Framework can provide the context around an activity. Linking to a Competency Framework from an activity report seems to fit. If he wanted to know what scope of surgery an activity covers, pointing to a competency framework seems appropriate. 

3 Follow up on using classification to link an Activity Report to a Competency Framework

Valerie commented that she had updated the document to reflect  how you can use the Classification element in Healthcare LOM with URI’s pointing to a competency framework and competency object.

Carl discussed his example. They are doing the same things in slightly different ways. There are 3 options given using existing standards. 1) Use Credit Focus.

James asked about the origin of the Credit Focus element. Valerie explained that RSNA had requested it for futher categorization of the content of a ce activity.

Carl added that the second option was using the text-based method of healthcare lom elements. Carl asked whther SCORE was a curriculum or a competency framework.

James replied that it is more of a competency framework. But the idea is to standardize the curriculum. it is the basis of the curriculum in surgical residency.

Carl commented that you could reference a competency object.  This user by completing this activity has exhibited this competency.

James commented that it doesn’t demonstrate the person has the competency. It does show an attempt to educate that person in relation to that competency. You could link to a standardized set of descriptions as opposed to free form description.

Carl commented that makes sense. The third example uses URIs to Link to an XML document for the competency framework and object. That would allow you to open the XML and interrogate it. 

He threw in another way, just before the call. He has lots of interest in linked data. The example he provided  shows using the Dublin Core metadata standard, dc terms, which gives you ability to reference a resource. He used that with the rdf resource attribute to reference a competency object. This module references this competency. That is a little more concise. It also provides a little more semantic meaning. RDF is a core component of linked data. DBpedia is a vast database of documents that link to other documents. You follow one document to another by following information in the data set. RDF is a series of statements you can make. Subject Predicate Object. Dave Smith is based near the city of Birmingham. Matt Briggs knows Dave Smith. An activity report references a competency object.

James asked how would you take the example and modify it to provide context? Where would you change to include semantic references.

Carl replied that they added a dcterms reference to Credit Focus. This credit area references a particular competency object. Does that make sense?  If we did it this way, we would need to allow for extension within Credit Focus. There may be other context inside activity or module. You may want to show which modules reference which competencies.

James added that you could map to several frameworks depending on who is defining them. How do you know which to map it to?  The Activity provider has to define. There may be broad vs focused introductions to laproscopic surgery.

Carl commented it may be that doing it this way doesn’t provide enough context. There is a construct called about in rdf, then you could have elements that provide that context. Could point to unrelated competency objects or frameworks. If you have multiple competency objects, you may need to make a distinction as to which are important. Another element or two provides context. He would be interested in exploring that. If you have two frameworks and you want to reference both, how do you do that?

James commented that would be great if Carl could investigate. Regardless of who defines, may need to be mapped somewhere else. one benefit of linked data. About still defines someone to say how resources are linked. he agreed to help in defining the use case. He also recommended looking at examples AAMC has made. He would like to talk to Tim and Rosalyn and see examples of competency frameworks to see how he would most appropriately build one.

Valerie added that we could also allow the Technical Steering Committee to weigh in. These decisions could have broader implications.

Carl agreed. There could be a lot of benefit to introducing these concepts into medbiq standards. 

4 Review CECity Activity Report example, and the concept of points towards requirements

Carl reviewed that in their Lifetime e-learning platform, they have a notification API based on Atom. They use it as a messaging format. The example shows an atom feed with an entry that has a link to an activity report instance. Their system posts the feed to a user of their app. They open up the feed, look for the link, and pull in activity report XML.  They notify the client that a user has completed an activity, and here is link to activity report XML.

James asked why not just send the report.

Carl replied that the client may decide to pull in the data later or not at all. They keep notification short as possible. Sending the report all the time bloats what goes over the wire.

Next, the activity report is embedded in an Atom feed in the content element. They have some extra information in Xtensible info. ID completion date, credit issue date. They could have used unique id in the member profile but made the design decision to use an Xtensible info element. Two elements that may be of interest are completion date and credit issue date.

Jyothi commented that they use activity report web service. She commented that Xtensible info is now deprecated and that Carl should consider using the xsd: any element.

Carl replied that they have clients using the platform that have not made that change yet. Looking forward, another client may see those elements in the appropriate areas. Sometimes you lose context with xtensibleinfo. Will be easier to place extra info in context.

5 Open discussion

James explained that at the annual conference there is less time for working groups to meet in person. Because membership of professional profile and activity report has overlap, we may have combined session.

He will transfer the competency linking discussion to the technical Steering Committee and propose a use case, see how best to implement.  We will schedule the next meeting after the TSC discusses.


Action Items

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