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Peer Observation and Review of Teaching (PORT) is a scheme for St George’s staff. The aims of PORT are to:

  • facilitate your development in teaching and learning by creating space for feedback and discussion about educational practice

  • provide you with evidence of personal and professional development for the purposes of probation, the Personal Review Scheme and for applications for promotion

  • connect with other professional development activities such as the St George’s SHINE scheme for fellowship recognition

  • contribute to a scholarly and evidence-based approach to teaching and learning methods and policies at St George’s

  • strengthen St George’s teaching and learning community by identifying, understanding and disseminating good practice.

St George’s academic performance standards require all staff who engage in teaching to participate in peer observation at least every three years.

PORT runs in parallel with the Faculty of Health and Social Care Science’s Peer Review scheme and with the assessed peer reviews required for staff completing the Postgraduate Certificate in Healthcare and Biomedical Education.

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Why should I participate in PORT?

Whether you observe or are observed, you will discover something about teaching and learning every time you participate in PORT.

For individuals, you can use your experience of participating in PORT for:

  • applications for promotion and in personal review 

  • meeting required academic standards by undertaking PORT at least every three years

  • applications for fellowship recognition via the St George’s accredited fellowship scheme SHINE

  • evaluating new teaching practices or innovations you have introduced

  • identifying possible areas for your own professional development and plan for your professional learning.

How does PORT work?

PORT is teacher-led and designed to suit your professional needs, interests and learning goals. To complete PORT you should:

  1. Select and contact a recognised PORT observer to observe your practice.

  2. Arrange a meeting with your observer prior to the observation to discuss the aims of the session and the type of feedback they will give and receive.

  3. Have your teaching observed by your observer who will complete a record of the observations using the PORT form.

  4. Arrange a post-observation meeting for feedback and completion of paperwork.

  5. Complete the PORT observation record to confirm that the observation has taken place and identify any institution level outcomes.

Who are the observers for PORT?

A peer observer can be another St George’s staff member (or St George’s Healthcare or other NHS trust) with a teaching role – the person can be from a different division. When you specifically want feedback on the content of teaching or specific skills are being observed, the definition of peer may be narrower. Peer observers must have attended the “Peer observation and review of teaching (PORT)” session included in EduFocus.

What happens to the PORT documentation?

The scheme is designed to support your own learning and development, so if you have been observed then you retain the completed PORT form showing the feedback on your teaching observation. There is a section for you to reflect on the feedback and on what you learnt through the PORT process as a whole and to produce action points as appropriate.

We also, however, want to keep an institutional record of participation in the scheme as part of our commitment to teaching excellence at St George’s. To do this we ask the teacher to confirm that an observation has taken place and to identify individual and institutional opportunities for learning. This may include resource and development needs for individual staff as well showcasing outstanding practice or innovation.

Teachers are asked to complete a PORT observation record that includes:

  • names and posts of the PORT pair and details of the session observed

  • any examples of good practice for potential dissemination and sharing

  • any requests for staff development

  • any resource issues identified

  • an invitation to comment on the PORT process.

What support is there for PORT?

If you would like to learn more about PORT and how to get the most of PORT, you can book to attend a “Peer Observation and Review of Teaching (PORT)” session.

Get in touch

If you would like to discuss PORT or you are interested in becoming an observer, contact the PORT coordinator Dr Saranne Weller.

 

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