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Professor Jennifer Cleland

University of Aberdeen
SMERC Director

Jennifer is Chair of the Association for the Study of Medical Education (ASME). She is Vice-Chair of the Association for the Study of Medical Education, Europe (AMEE) International Research Board. She is on the Board of Management for Medical Education, the highest impact journal in her field. Her research applies conceptual frameworks and novel methodologies to illuminate and extend evidence in selection, assessment, performance and careers-related decision making in medical education. She has particular interests in widening access to medicine and has recently been commissioned by the General Medical Council (GMC) and the Selecting for Excellence Group (SEEG) to carry out work on this topic. With over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, she has published widely and has attracted over £2 million in grants over the last 10 years. Until recently, she worked every week as a Clinical Psychologist in hospital medicine in the NHS. 



  • Selection, assessment and performance in medical education and training
  • Widening access to medicine
  • Feedback in simulated and workplace learning environments
  • Preparedness for practice and educational transitions
  • Medical careers decision making
  • Leadership emergence in healthcare workplace
  • Curriculum innovation

Key publications

  • Rees CE, Dennis A, Lough M, Ker J, Cleland JA, Johnston P, Leese G.  Identifying priorities for medical education research in Scotland: involving stakeholders to set the national research agenda. In press, Medical Education.
  • Cleland JA, Reeve J, Rosenthal J, Johnston P.  Resisting the tick box culture: refocusing medical education and training. British Journal of General Practice, 2014; 64: 422-424.
  • Cleland JA, Leaman J, Billett S. 2014.  Developing medical capacities and dispositions through practice-based experiences. In Harteis C, Rausch A, Seifried J (Eds.) Discourses on Professional Learning: On the Boundary between Learning and Working. Springer, Dordrecht: The Netherlands.
  • Alexander C, Millar J, Szmidt N, Hanlon K, Cleland JA.  A review of the factors influencing the transition from student to junior doctor. The Clinical Teacher 2014; 11: 188–192.
  • Cleland JA,Roberts TE. 2013. Medical Education Research. In Dent JA and Harden RM. A Practical Guide for Medical Teachers. Churchill Livingstone: London.