What we do

Our Aims

Keele Medical Education Research Group is a group of researchers and scholars who are committed to improving the quality of healthcare education by researching the underpinning theory of educational practice, and by developing, implementing and evaluating innovations into practice. 

We aim to support Keele School of Medicine’s mission of graduating excellent clinicians by ensuring that the curriculum is enhanced by rigorously researched, cutting edge innovation, whilst contributing to the national and international challenges facing healthcare professions education.

Our Activity

We achieve our aims through a variety of activities:

  • Directly conduct of research, lead by our group members
  • Provision of bursaries to support start-up project costs for medical educators with ideas for research projects
  • Supporting the academic development of staff interested conducting medical education research through our meetings and by direct mentorship

Our Themes

We support research around distinct themes in medical education:

  • Assessment and Feedback: Including research on: assessor cognition; skills assessment; standard setting; VESCA within OSCE's; social aspects of the feedback dialogue; students interaction with feedback and reflection
  • Preparation for Practice: Including research on Safe Effective Clinical Outcome (SECO) teaching; career transitions; career choices
  • Scholarship and Learning: Including research on immunology and anatomy learning; the use of digital media to support PBL and education in general practice



Professor Bob McKinley

Prof. Bob McKinley - Profile


Peter Yeates

Dr Peter Yeates - Profile 




Dr Naz Ali

Dr Nazim Ali


Russ Crawford
Dr Russell Crawford - Profile

Dr Natalie Cope

Dr Natalie Cope 


Dr Lisa Dikomitis

Dr Lisa Dikomitis
- Profile

Sarah Aynsley

Dr. Sarah Aynsley
Dr Janet Lefroy Dr. Janet Lefroy - Profile




There is a larger group of people from the school who are affiliated to the group. If you would like to be included please contact medicine.educationresearch@keele.ac.uk


MERG supports research through a series of seminars and monthly meetings. Details of events are disseminated through our mailing list, as well as on this page. If you would like to be added to the mailing list, please email medicine.educationresearch@keele.ac.uk

MERG seminars

These are held roughly once a term. Some showcase completed medical education research from within the group, whereas others feature  acclaimed external speakers  form the UK and internationally. This vibrant programme will be stimulating to anyone interested in scholarship in medical education.

Forthcoming School Seminars include:

Eric Holmboe - 25th October 2017 - Dinwoodie Lecture Theatre, David Weatherall Building

Head and shoulders shot of Dr Eric Holmboe

Dr. Holmboe is currently Senior Vice President for Quality Research and Academic Affairs at the American Board of Internal Medicine and American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation. He is also Professor Adjunct of Medicine at Yale University. Prior to joining the ABIM in 2004, he was the was Associate Program Director, Yale Primary Care Internal Medicine Residency Program, Director of Student Clinical Assessment, Yale School of Medicine, Director of Faculty Development, Department of Medicine, and Assistant Director for the Yale Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program. Prior to joining Yale in 2000, he served as division chief of General Internal Medicine at the National Naval Medical Center. His research interests include interventions to improve quality of care and methods in the evaluation of clinical competence. He is a graduate of Franklin and Marshall College and the University of Rochester School of Medicine. He completed his residency and chief residency at Yale-New Haven Hospital, and was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar at Yale University.


Professor Karen Mattick - 23rd April 2018 - Dinwoodie Lecture Theatre, David Weatherall Building

head and shoulders image of Karen Mattick Karen Mattick is Professor of Medical Education, Co-Lead for the Centre for Research in Professional Learning at the University of Exeter, and Director of the Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice. She has over fourteen years’ experience as a medical education researcher and educator and was instrumental in creating the Exeter Medical Education Research Group (EMERGe). She has published over 50 peer-reviewed research papers in medical education and clinical science, and is Associate Editor for The Clinical Teacher journal. Her academic practice has been recognized in the award of Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy in 2012 and a National Teaching Fellowship in 2005. Prior to joining the medical education field, Karen worked for the NHS as a Clinical Scientist, involved in both service delivery and clinical science research.

Monthly Meetings: 

MERG uses two formats of regular meetings to support research and scholarship:

Face to Face Meeting:

These are an informal research meeting. They are a forum to discuss research in development. The research can be at any stage from an early draft or protocol, to early findings emerging from analysis. These meetings are extremely helpful to clarify your thinking and to make the group aware of research in progress. There are two slots to present at each meeting.

Journal Club:

This involves one person selecting a paper on a topic of interest, disseminating it to the group to read, then giving a brief overview of the paper to stimulate our discussion. We're always interested in 2 questions:

  1. Do we trust the findings, and
  2. Would it change our practice

If you would like to present at either Face to Face or Journal Club, please email medicine.educationresearch@keele.ac.uk


2017/18 Schedule

Title Venue Date Time
Face to Face Room 0.02, David Weatherall Building, Keele University  11.09.2017 14:00-15:30
Journal Club Room 0.03, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 16.10.2017 14:00-16:00
Face to Face Room 0.02, David Weatherall Buiding, Keele University 13.11.2017 14:00-15:30
Face to Face Room 0.03, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 18.12.2017 14:00-15:30
Face to Face Room 0.02, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 15.01.2018 14:00-15:30
School Seminar (speaker tbc) Dinwoodie Lecture Theatre, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 07.02.2018 13:00-15:30
Journal Club Room 0.03, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 12.02.2018 14:00-16:00
Face to Face Room 0.03, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 19.03.2018 14:00-15:30
Face to Face Room 0.36, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 16.04.2018 14:00-15:30
Journal Club Room 0.36, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 14.05.2018 14:00-16:00
Face to Face Room 0.02, David Weatherall Building, Keele University 11.06.2018 14:00-15:30



Support is available in a variety of different ways:

Research Advice Clinic

MERG offers a free service to help you to develop your ideas. Send us your idea and we'll arrange a time for you to meet with an experienced researcher to talk about your idea, advise on the design and the next steps and perhaps partner you with a more experienced researcher to help you move the idea forward. All medical education ideas are welcome (although we have more to offer within our themes) and the idea can be at any stage of development from "I've had an idea, but I don't know if its worth pursuing" to "Here's my detailed design. Can you improve it?" 

Clinic slots are ad-hoc and can be at any time which is mutually convenient and will usually last 30 minutes to an hour. To book a clinic slot, describe your idea in 200 words and send it to medicine.educationresearch@keele.ac.uk and we will get back to you to arrange a meeting.

Statistical Advisory Clinic

The Research Institute for Primary Care and Health Sciences (iPCHS) offers a free bio-statistical advisory service to the Medical School via drop-in sessions. Consultations can be arranged with experienced statisticians, with advice given on:

  • study design to obtain appropriate data
  • statistical analysis of data
  • interpretation of analyses
  • how best to record and store your data

The service will offer 30 minute time slots, up to a maximum of 4 sessions per month initially. If not all slots are taken and more time is needed for a specific project, sessions can be extended to 60 minutes. Note that advice is not given over the phone, only by face-to-face consultation with a follow up email where necessary.

For further details, download this guide: Statistical Advisory Service - Information Sheet

To apply for a clinic slot, complete this form Statistical Advisory Service - Booking Form and return to primarycare.statadvice@keele.ac.uk

MERG Bursaries

As part of supporting the development of Medical Education Research, MERG offers a number of small "seed-fund" bursaries each year. The amount and number of these vary with our funding but are typically £500. It can be used to cover consumables such as transcription, simulated patients costs, software, IT support, participant travel expenses or any other direct cost which arise from research. Announcements are made via our mailing list and are listed here whilst available.

Current Bursary Opportunities:

Do you have a great idea for a medical or science education research project, which needs some funding to get underway? If so, a MERG education research bursary of up to £500 could be the answer.

Click on the link below for details on how to apply:

University Ethics

All research involving human participants requires ethical approval. Details of applying for Keele University Research Ethics Committees can be accessed here:


Useful Links

To help with your research endeavours, here are a number of useful links:

Social Media:

MERG Twitter account: @KeeleMERG


MERG YouTube Channel - Coming soon

Medical Research Organisations

Association for the Study of Medical Education (ASME)

The Association for the Study of Medical Education in Europe (AMEE)

The Academy of Medical Educators

The Society for Academic Primary Care

The General Medical Council - Education and Training

Research Councils and Grant Awarding Bodies

The National Institute of Health Research

The Economic and Social Research Council

The Leverhulme Trust

Medical Education Journals

Medical Education

Medical Teacher

Academic Medicine

Advances in Health Sciences Education

Education for Primary Care

Perspectives in Medical Education

Teaching and Learning in Medicine

Journal of Graduate Medical Education

There are many others; please contact medicine.educationresearch@keele.ac.uk for a more comprehensive list.