What are the implications of implementation science for medical education?

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Medical Education Online








Dissemination and implementation; Educational continuum; Evidence translation


© 2015 David W. Price et al. Background: Derived from multiple disciplines and established in industries outside of medicine, Implementation Science (IS) seeks to move evidence-based approaches into widespread use to enable improved outcomes to be realized as quickly as possible by as many as possible. Methods: This review highlights selected IS theories and models, chosen based on the experience of the authors, that could be used to plan and deliver medical education activities to help learners better implement and sustain new knowledge and skills in their work settings. Results: IS models, theories and approaches can help medical educators promote and determine their success in achieving desired learner outcomes. We discuss the importance of incorporating IS into the training of individuals, teams, and organizations, and employing IS across the medical education continuum. Challenges and specific strategies for the application of IS in educational settings are also discussed. Conclusions: Utilizing IS in medical education can help us better achieve changes in competence, performance, and patient outcomes. IS should be incorporated into curricula across disciplines and across the continuum of medical education to facilitate implementation of learning. Educators should start by selecting, applying, and evaluating the teaching and patient care impact one or two IS strategies in their work.