Implementation of a Peer Writing Accountability Group to Improve Scholarly Productivity: A Quest for Protected Time




White, Annesha
Yuet, Cheng


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Purpose: The pursuit of scholarly activity is a well-described expectation of health sciences faculty given their role in the advancement of public health and patient wellness. Full-time faculty—who maintain clinical teaching sites and service responsibilities—have unique challenges when asked to focus on research. Recommendations for successful scholarly endeavors include formal mentoring, participation in clinical research programs, collaboration with faculty with proven research experience, and involvement in writing groups. A peer-to-peer writing accountability group (WAG) was established at the UNT System College of Pharmacy in June 2017. The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of the WAG on scholarly productivity among health sciences faculty. Methods: This study was approved by the UNTHSC IRB in June 2017. The WAG consisted of a small number of pharmacy faculty who met weekly from June 2017-August 2017 to work on scholarly activity. Pre- and post-surveys were administered to all participants. Descriptive analyses were performed to assess writing session duration and quantity of scholarly activity. A paired t test was used to determine differences before and after WAG participation. For all statistical tests, alpha level of significance was set at 0.05. Qualitative data based on responses to open ended questions was content analyzed to identify themes. Results:Ten (100%) faculty involved in the WAG completed pre- and post-surveys. Average writing session duration was 2.1 to 2.9 hours, while number of pages written, abstracts submitted, and presentations provided was 17-24, 1-2, and 1, respectively. Mean scores for the pre- and post-test were: average number of publications accepted (2, 1); writing frequency where 0=Daily and 3=Rarely (2.4, 1.6); current time management is sufficient (3, 1.7), current organization skills are sufficient (2.3, 1.5) where 0=Strongly Agree and 4=Strongly Disagree (p Conclusion: Participation in a peer-to-peer WAG increased productivity, time management, and organization skills with regards to scholarship. WAG could be an effective tool to improve scholarly productivity among health sciences faculty.