June 2020 Research Rounds

kori ladonna

Revealing the Hidden Complexities of Medical Training and Practice

Kori LaDonna, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Innovation in Medical Education and Department of Medicine, University of Ottawa

Date: Wednesday, June 17, 2020 *Cancelled*

Time: 12:00pm to 1:30pm (feel free to bring a bagged lunch)


  • Life Sciences Centre 1312 CMR (host venue)
  • DHCC 2252
  • RJH CA 120
  • NHSC 9-374



When considering the complexities of 21st century medical training and practice, we tend to focus our attention on system inefficiencies, procedural complications, and patients’ increasingly complex care needs. However, recent medical education research suggests that other dimensions such as trust, ethics, team communication and conflict are more commonly identified by clinicians as sources of complexity. Using examples from her research, Dr. Kori LaDonna will further expand our view of complexity by sharing additional, often unseen challenges—such as the imposter syndrome, a form of inaccurate self-assessment in which individuals struggle to internalize their capabilities and achievements—that can contribute to burnout and roadblock career advancement for both trainees and practicing physicians. Dr. LaDonna will seek to normalize the imposter syndrome as a common experience amongst high achievers, and argue that revealing its impact challenges the pervasive assumption in medicine that those who seem to be performing well don’t struggle.


Dr. LaDonna completed her PhD in Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at Western University in 2014; her doctoral research explored patient and family centered care issues in chronic neurological illness. During her postdoctoral fellowship at the Centre for Education Research and Innovation (Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, Western University), Dr. LaDonna collaborated on research projects that examined (1) learning experiences in residency training programs, and (2) how expert clinicians understand and use their professional experiences—including career ‘turning points’, and clinical judgment in complex situations— to inform learners. As an Assistant Professor in the Department of Innovation in Medical Education and the Department of Medicine, Dr. LaDonna is currently developing a research program that explores issues of credibility and safety in medicine that is currently situated in two literatures: patient engagement and self-assessment. The initial focus of her work is to explore both the potential role of patients and family caregivers as health professions educators and assessors, and the ‘hidden’ complexities of training and practice that may impact trainees’ and practicing physicians’ learning, wellness, and professional development. Dr. LaDonna has expertise in qualitative research methodologies including grounded theory and phenomenology, and visual research methods including rich pictures, photovoice, and photo elicitation.

Accredited by UBC CPD



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 (1.5 per session) Mainpro+ Group Learning credits. Each physician should claim only those credits accrued through participation in the activity.

RCPSC Accreditation

CHES Research Rounds 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.