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Formative Assessment Process
We view the formative assessment process as the primary mechanism for supporting trainees’ attainment of higher levels of competence through learning and performance improvement. Therefore, we incorporate multiple strategies as part of the ongoing formative assessment process.

Individualized Development Plan (IDP). At the outset of the postdoctoral training year residents complete an IDP. Residents, in collaboration with their primary supervisors, are asked to delineate their learning goals and specific learning activities associated with the competencies being addressed by each of the four learning experiences (Delivery Direct Service, Participating in Research, Providing Supervision, Engaging in Professional Development). At the six month mark, residents and their supervisors indicate the learning activities completed to date and any changes in learning goals and specific learning activities going forward. At the end of the training year, residents use the IDP to reflect upon their success in meeting their learning goals. The IDP process is designed to be a collaborative endeavor, one that includes in-depth discussion of the residents’ strengths and areas for competency development.

Informal Supervisor Feedback. Supervisors are reminded by the postdoctoral residency leadership team at the outset of each training year about the value of ongoing, frequent, and meaningful informal supervisory feedback. Such input is a critical aspect of the formative assessment process.

360 Degree Assessment and Action Plan. Emory University School of Medicine developed a 360 Degree Training Tool for Health Service Psychology that is linked to the core competencies that are addressed by the aims and learning experiences of the residency. Within the first four to six months, residents engage in this 360 process in which they gather feedback from themselves (self-assessment), as well as anonymous feedback from their supervisors, peers, supervisees, and interprofessional colleagues. This integrated feedback is provided to them by one or more of their primary supervisors and together an action plan is created that helps the residents to capitalize on their strengths and address areas for potential growth in the different competency domains. 

Summative Assessment Process
The summative process, while designed to serve as an end point or outcome measurement, is also intended to enhance trainees’ competence. This summative assessment process occurs twice per year (6 months, 1 year) , unless a resident is manifesting problems of professional competence. It includes the following strategies.

Supervisor Assessment. The Competency Assessment Tool is used for supervisors to provide quantitative ratings on the essential components associated with each of the core competency domains along with an overall rating for each of these competency domains. It also includes opportunities for supervisors to address strengths and areas for improvement associated with each of the core competency domains.

Self-Assessment. Given our focus on self-reflection and view that accurate self-assessment is key to effective life-long learning and competent practice, residents also complete the aforementioned Competency Assessment Tool. During the summative assessment process, the supervisor and the resident are expected to discuss and understand any discrepancies in ratings.

Supervisee Assessment. The graduate students that the residents supervise complete the Graduate Student Supervisee Assessment of Postdoctoral Resident as Supervisor Form. This form has two categories: Supervisory Environment and Supervision in Competency Domains. The core competencies fall within these two rubrics. Supervisees also have the opportunity to provide input on areas of the strength and recommendations for change. Data from these assessments are also discussed during each summative assessment meeting.

Residents’ Assessments of Supervisors and the Program
At the aforementioned summative assessment points, the residents have the opportunity to evaluate their supervisors using the Postdoctoral Residency Supervisor Assessment Form. They also provide formal feedback on the postdoctoral residency seminar and their overall experience as postdoctoral residents. In addition to these two formal evaluation periods, informal and verbal feedback is ongoing.

Due Process Guidelines
At the beginning of the training year, all postdoctoral residents are provided with Due Process Guidelines that describe the process that will be followed if either the program has concerns about the trainee’s performance or if the trainee has concerns about any aspect of the training program. These guidelines include all steps of the grievance procedure leading to termination if the grievance is against the trainee, including written notification, remediation plan, probation, termination, and appeal. Similarly, steps are outlined for trainee’s filing of complaints.