Joanna Bates, MDCM, CCFP, FCFP

Emeritus Faculty

Dr. Joanna Bates graduated from McGill University in 1976. She completed a rotating internship at St. Paul’s Hospital in 1977, entered community-based practice, became a Certificant of the College of Family Physicians of Canada (CCFP) in 1983 and a fellow of the College in 1994. In 1997, she was appointed to the Faculty of Medicine as Assistant Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine and was promoted to Professor in 2008. Dr. Bates has held the roles at UBC of postgraduate program director family medicine; associate dean admissions; senior associate dean, undergraduate medical education and education; and founding director, Centre for Health Education Scholarship. During her tenure in these roles, Dr. Bates led the doubling of the UBC MD Undergraduate program, and its distribution to two new campuses in BC using a technology infrastructure. In addition to medical education, she has continued to build a research program in telehealth. Nationally, she has contributed to the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the Medical Council of Canada.

Academic Interests

My main area of academic interest is exploring the role of context in learning. Specifically, I am interested in how we conceptualize context, what trainees learn informally from context, and how trainees adjust to new contexts. I have a program of research intended to increase our understanding of how trainees and others adjust to new contexts of training and practice.

A second area of interest is distributed medical education (DME) more broadly. I am currently engaged in exploring the impacts of the Northern Medical Program on the local community, the use of videoconferencing in DME, and the outcomes of DME.

As a family physician, I continue to be interested in the role of the family physician in health care, in patient-centred and team care, and in how we conceptualize patients in both health care and medical education.

I am a qualitative researcher, and I use complexity theory as a lens to understand complex nonlinear phenomena.

Publication Highlights

Bates, J., Ellaway, R., Watling, C. (2018) The influence of workplace context on learning and teaching. Learning and Teaching in Clinical Contexts: A Practical Guide. Delany C Molloy E Elselvior, in press 2018.

Schrewe, B., Ellaway, R., Watling, C., Bates, J. (2018) The contextual curriculum: Learning in and from the matrix. Academic Medicine, in press.

Ellaway, R., Bates, J. (2018) Distributed medical education in Canada. Canadian Medical Education Journal, [S.l.], v. 9, n. 1, p. e1-5, mar. 2018. ISSN 1923-1202.

Cuncic C., Regehr G., Frost H., Bates J. (2018) It’s all about relationships: a qualitative study of family physicians’ teaching experiences in rural longitudinal clerkships. Perspectives on Medical Education 7: 100.

Asgarova, S., M. MacKenzie, Bates, J. (2017). Learning From Patients: Why Continuity Matters. Academic Medicine 92(11S): S55-S60.

Ellaway, R. H., J. Bates, et al. (2017). Ecological theories of systems and contextual change in medical education. Medical Education 51(12): 1250-1259.

Bates, J., Ellaway, R.H. (2016). Mapping the dark matter of context: a conceptual scoping review. Medical Education. 2016;50(8):807-16.

Recent Presentations

Topps, M., Ellaway, R., Kearney, R., Hartford, W., Bates, J. (2018). Getting to capability: How residents adjust to new contexts. The Canadian Conference on Medical Education, Halifax, NS.

Sidhu, R., Spence, J., Lampron, D., Asgarova, S., Bates, J. (2017). “Where do I belong?” How residents negotiate membership in multiple communities through videoconferencing. International Conference on Residency Education, Quebec City, QC.

Topps, M., Ellaway, R., Kearney, M., Hartford, W., Bates, J. (2017). Challenging causality in community-based training. International Conference on Residency Education, Quebec City, QC.

Awards and Grants

  • RCPSC MERG award: Contextual Competence: exploring how residents recreate competent performance in new settings (2016)
  • The College of Family Physicians Canada Lifetime Achievement Awards in Family Medicine Research (2016)
  • UBC DME Research grant: Bridging two worlds with virtual space: how residents use ICT to negotiate membership in two distinct training communities (2015)
  • President’s Award for Exemplary National Leadership in Academic Medicine, AFMC (2012)
  • Doctor honoris cause, University of Sherbrooke (2010)
  • W. Victor Johnson Award, College of Family Physician of Canada (2008)