Ilene Harris is Professor, Head and Director of Graduate Studies in Health Professions Education Leadership in the Department of Medical Education (DME), and Director of the MHPE Program. She is also Professor in the Department of Pathology in the Division of Pathology Education. Dr. Harris completed her bachelor’s, masters and doctoral degrees at the University of Chicago. Prior to joining DME in 2003, she was Professor and Director of the Office of Educational Development and Research at the University of Minnesota Medical School, where she had oversight for faculty development programs, standardized patient programs, OSCE examinations; and provided education consultation to course directors and committees across the continuum of medical education. She was also Professor in the College of Education, where she taught in the Curriculum and Instruction graduate program; she was also a member of the graduate faculty in the Medical School’s Health Informatics Program.
Dr. Harris has had national and regional education leadership roles. She served a four-year term as member of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Research in Medical Education (RIME) Conference Steering Committee, and served as its Chair in 1999. She was the first Convener of the AAMC Central Region RIME Section, and in that role served as Program Chair for several years for the RIME portion of the Central Region Group on Education Affairs (CGEA) spring meeting. She was Chair of the CGEA in 2003-2005. Dr. Harris has also had major leadership roles in the American Educational Research Association (AERA), Division of Education in the Professions (Division I), which is a major venue for presentation of research on health professions education. She was President of the Division, and prior to that, Division Secretary and Program Chair.
Dr. Harris’ research has focused on curriculum deliberation, qualitative methods, clinical performance assessment, teaching in ambulatory settings, and program evaluation. Her research has been reported in over 100 publications in leading peer-reviewed journals in medical education and curriculum studies; and over 300 presentations at national and regional meetings. Ilene has also served as a consultant to many organizations. For example, she served for over 20 years as Evaluator of the Bush Foundation (St. Paul, Minnesota) Mid-career Physician Clinical Fellows program, a mid-career sabbatical program for physicians, designed to improve health care in communities through the professional and personal development of established physicians. A paper reporting this evaluation work received the award for Best Paper by an Established Investigator at an annual meeting of the AAMC in the RIME Conference. Ilene’s scholarship and leadership has been recognized by several prestigious awards. In 2001, she received the Medical Education Laureate Award for Leadership, Faculty Development, and Scholarly Standards from the AAMC, CGEA. In 2010 she received the Distinguished Career Award from the AERA Division of Education for the Professions, an award given to one individual every two years for ‘having a significant impact on research in the field of professions education’.