Building competency in the novice allied health professional through peer coaching
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The development of competence is an ongoing journey, and one that is particularly punctuated in the early part of a health professional's career. These novice practitioners need to recognize that the challenges inherent in building competency might be resolved more readily by engaging with peers. This paper outlines what it means to be a novice practitioner, and how peer coaching can be used to support professional development in the allied health sciences. An overview of the reasoning process and how peer coaching and experiential learning can be used to build competence is described. A structured and formal approach to peer coaching is outlined in this paper. Novices who embrace this professional development strategy will find the model of coaching practice and underlying strategies described in this paper beneficial to their experience. The importance of formalizing the process and the underlying communication skills needed for coaching are described in detail with accompanying examples to illustrate the model in practice.
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