NBME Revitalizes Grants Program to Enhance Assessment in Latin America

NBME® Latin America Grants Program Supports Collaboration, Innovation and Sustainability

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 18, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- NBME renews the Latin America Grants Program to continue its commitment to advancing innovative approaches to medical education and enriching the evaluation of health professionals. The call for proposals will be open in Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America and South America until March 4, 2024.

The Latin America Grants program was created by NBME in 2018 to support collaborations from institutions outside of the U.S. and Canada in order to develop student evaluation and assessment tools. NBME recognizes how the quality of medical education can impact the health outcomes of patients. By supporting the evolution of assessment, NBME believes the grants program can provide resources to advance initiatives that have a positive and long-lasting impact on the well-being of the public.

Grants of up to $50,000 over a two-year period are offered to fund innovative and sustainable projects that relate to assessment and address local needs and priorities.

“We hope through improved assessment and access to educational resources we can help medical professionals better address the unique health care challenges patients in Latin America may face and concurrently, improve the overall quality of patient outcomes,” Marni Grambau, Director, NBME Assessment Alliance said.

Since its creation, the Latin America Grants Program has supported six impressive projects spanning various countries including Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina and Peru.

“One of the goals of the program is to foster collaboration among programs, institutions and/or countries,” John V. Moore, NBME Director, Assessment Data Initiatives said. “We have found that these partnerships have allowed for the greater dissemination of novel practice and cutting-edge research. The sharing of information among institutions benefits all involved parties.”

Previous grant recipients have used the grants to drive significant and positive impact for medical education and practice in their regions. Past projects have addressed faculty development, programmatic evaluation, clinical assessment, student professionalism assessment and online learning.

With funding from the Latin America Grants Program, faculty from across 100 medical schools in Brazil developed a new national assessment. Their goal was to ensure that national examinations could provide consistent data regarding knowledge acquisition among Brazilian medical students. The exam was used by over 65,000 students in its pilot year. As a result of the test, nationwide discussions and training sessions occurred around assessment, the goals of medical education and the importance of tracking students’ progress over time.

For the 2024-2026 funding cycle, NBME will be accepting proposals that focus on competency assessment of learners, implementation of faculty development or quality improvement programs related to assessment in health professions education and/or program evaluation of curricular interventions using learning outcomes. 

Submissions for the grants program are due by March 4, 2024. To apply and learn more about the work of previous recipients, visit NBME’s Contributions website.

Proposals may be submitted by principal investigators (PIs) at lead institutions or consortia of lead institutions. Consortia are strongly preferred. Proposals will be accepted in English, Spanish or Portuguese. Each proposal will be evaluated by a panel of experts from NBME and medical school faculty from the Latin America region. Grant recipients will be notified in August 2024.

All leading institutions must have non-profit status. Lead institutions may be a health professions school, a ministry or other organization providing medical education at the undergraduate and/or residency level (e.g. hospital). A single lead institution will be designated as the grantee and will administer the award. Lead institutions must be located in Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America or South America. Members of a consortium need not be located in the same country.

Medical schools, whether applying individually or as part of a consortium, must:

  • Have graduated at least one class of students.
  • Be listed in the World Directory of Medical Schools (WDOMS) maintained by the World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research (FAIMER).

If the applicant institution is a hospital, it must:

  • Provide medical education training to residents.
  • Be accredited by a local or national organization.  

NBME is committed to supporting the development of medical education assessment and looks forward to collaborating with potential recipients to make broad and sustainable changes in Latin America. 

For the Spanish and Portuguese translations of this announcement, please visit NBME.org/news.

About the Application
Eligibility: This program is currently open to principal investigators with appointments at a medical school, a ministry or other organization (e.g. hospital) providing medical education at the undergraduate and/or residency level(s).   
The following elements constitute a complete proposal:   

  • Abstract (350 words) which summarizes the project.  
  • Program Description (6 pages) which includes: 
  • Introduction and Project Aims: A statement of the problem being addressed or investigated, including literature review and any existing pilot data.    
  • Methods and Materials (Data Collection): Study design and methods of the proposed project.     
  • Data Analysis and/or Program Evaluation: An evaluation plan that is appropriate for the study design links to the anticipated outcomes and results.  
  • Anticipated Outcomes and Results: Anticipated primary and any relevant secondary outcomes. Plans for generalizability.  
  • Collaboration and Mentoring: How the project will utilize collaboration among institutions, involve diverse stakeholders, and develop mentoring relationships within the project team. 
  • Future Steps: Generalized use of the project results or findings, or potential integration into other learning settings. 
  • Itemized Budget: limited to 10% indirect costs.     
  • Detailed Timeline: including key milestones, activities and deliverables. 
  • Biographical sketch: For principal investigator (PI) and associated team.   
  • IRB approvals/applications: As applicable.  
  • Letter of Support: At least one letter of support from institutional leadership (e.g., Division/Department Director, Dean, or other program leader, etc.). The letter should convey leadership support for the project and address PI’s available time to complete the project.    

Directions for Applying for the Latin America Grants Program 
The Application Guide explains the requirements and format that should be followed for your application submission.  

When you are ready to submit your application, please visit the Latin America Grants Portal.  

  1. Login or create an account on NBME’s Submittable page. 
  2. Select the 2024 Latin America Grants hyperlink or the “Submit” button. 
  3. Read the Guidelines and complete the form. 
  4. Follow the instructions for submitting your application and attach any required documents. 
  5. You may save your online application at any time and return to complete it later by scrolling to the bottom of the submission form and selecting “Save Draft.”   
  • When you are ready to return to complete the form, log into your account, click on your name at the top right of the internet browser, select “My Submissions” and select the desired draft.  

Reach out to our Grants Program team at  NBMELAGGrants@nbme.org with questions.

About NBME 
NBME offers a versatile selection of high-quality assessments and educational services for students, professionals, educators and institutions dedicated to the evolving needs of medical education and health care. To serve these communities, NBME collaborates with a comprehensive array of professionals, including test developers, academic researchers, scoring experts, physicians, medical educators, state medical board members and public representatives. 
Together with the Federation of State Medical Boards, NBME develops and manages the United States Medical Licensing Examination®. In addition, NBME is committed to meeting the needs of educators and learners globally with assessment products and expert services such as Subject Examinations, Customized Assessment Services, Self-Assessments, International Foundations of Medicine® and Item-Writing Workshops
NBME also provides medical education funding and mentorship through the Latin America Grants Program, Stemmler Fund and Strategic Educators Enhancement Fund, which serve to advance assessment at educators’ and health professionals’ own institutions. Learn more about NBME at NBME.org


Latin America Grants Program

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