The Capability Imperative: Revealing Ableism in Medical Education
Neera Jain, PhD, MS, CRC
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Centre for Health Education Scholarship
Date: Tuesday, April 12, 2022
Time: 12:00pm to 1:30pm
Hybrid: Life Sciences Centre 1312 CMR & Zoom*
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The movement to diversify medical education recognizes that various perspectives and life experiences enrich medical training, practice, and patient care. However, students with disabilities remain underrepresented in medical education and face barriers in structure, culture, and climate. Efforts to remedy exclusion have focused on bettering accommodation policy and practice.
This presentation draws from a constructivist grounded theory of four U.S. medical schools that asked: how is disability inclusion enacted in medical education? Amongst other things, the study shows that inclusion was informed by the capability imperative, a context-specific manifestation of ableism that upholds a cultural logic of compulsory hyper-ablebodiedness and mindedness. I describe this logic and argue that it renders disabled students’ misfits in medical education. Their inclusion is constrained, always exceptional. To be truly inclusive of diverse bodyminds, the capability imperative must be interrogated and dismantled.
Neera Jain is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Centre for Health Education Scholarship at the UBC Faculty of Medicine. She completed her PhD in Aotearoa New Zealand at the University of Auckland Faculty of Education and Social Work in 2020. Her doctoral thesis won the 2021 AMEE Doctoral Report award. She is a former disability resource professional at two U.S. health science campuses and advocate for disability inclusion in health science education. She co-edited the book Equal Access for Students with Disabilities: The Guide for Health Science and Professional Education (Springer Publishing, 2020) and co-authored the AAMC special report, Accessibility, Inclusion, and Action in Medical Education: Lived Experiences of Learners and Physicians with Disabilities (2018).
The University of British Columbia Division of Continuing Professional Development (UBC CPD) is fully accredited by the Committee on Accreditation of Continuing Medical Education (CACME) to provide study credits for continuing medical education for physicians. This program meets the certification criteria of the College of Family Physicians of Canada and has been certified by UBC CPD for up to 15.0 Mainpro+ Group Learning credits. Each physician should claim only those credits accrued through participation in the activity. CFPC Session ID#: 195173-001.
The CHES Cutting Edge Speaker Series is a self-approved group learning activity (Section 1) as defined by the Maintenance of Certification Program of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.