Understanding the Current Context of Leadership Development Through Dietetic Education in Canada


Background: Leadership education includes individual development and learning from effective leaders. Evidence in the literature suggest education leaders and curriculum designers should revise health professions education to include a more explicit focus on leadership. In Canada there is a new competency domain related to dietetic leadership, however little is known about Canadian dietitians’ leadership development.
Method: To develop a foundational understanding of how leadership skills are currently taught in dietetic education in Canada, a documentary analysis of 13 Canadian dietetic programs and a focus group interview with dietetic educators was conducted as one phase of a doctoral study. The interview was recorded and transcribed verbatim. A data extraction tool was used to analyze the program documents and thematic analysis was conducted on the interview transcript.
Results: Findings demonstrate that leadership development may not be explicit in dietetic education, but transferrable skills aligned with leadership emerged. The notion of self-leadership and participating in extracurricular activities were also emphasized in the focus group interview. The role of the educator is important in informing, designing, and delivering the program. In addition to their teaching roles, educators play a critical role in shaping learners’ professional identity and career path.
Conclusion: Leadership is important in dietetics and can be cultivated through dietetic education and further developed throughout dietetic practice. To best understand the context of leadership in dietetic education and practice, it is important to understand how it is currently taught in different programs as well as practicing dietitians’ perspectives.

Author Information
Billie Jane Hermosura, University of Ottawa, Canada

Paper Information
Conference: PCE2023
Stream: Professional Training

This paper is part of the PCE2023 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Hermosura B. (2023) Understanding the Current Context of Leadership Development Through Dietetic Education in Canada ISSN: 2758-0962 The Paris Conference on Education 2023: Official Conference Proceedings https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2758-0962.2023.11
To link to this article: https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2758-0962.2023.11

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon