VA Fellowship in Health Professions Education Evaluation and Research


The Advanced Fellowship in Health Professions Education Evaluation and Research provides two years of formal training and mentoring in educational scholarship with a focus on projects within the San Francisco VA (SFVA).

The goal of the fellowship program is to develop experts to advance healthcare education through practice, inquiry and improvement, with a special focus on program evaluation and educational research.






Entry year

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Tiffany Chambers, MD
2023 (expected)

Transfusion Medicine   2022

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Audrey Nguyen, MD, MAEd

Plastic Surgery Overlapping Worlds of Art and Plastic Surgery: Implications for Surgical Training (2022) 2021

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Sara Sani, MD


Review of feasibility studies in health professions education; Evaluation of telehealth curricula (2022)


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Lindsey Haddock, MD, MAEd


Qualitative study of co-learning in the workplace (2021)


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Nina Zhao, MD, MAEd


Validity evidence for workplace-based assessments (2021)


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Joe Cook, MA

Mindfulness Instructor

Development and evaluation of whole clinician mindfulness curriculum for trainees (2020)


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Emily Abdoler, MD, MAEd

Infectious Diseases

Qualitative study of therapeutic reasoning among hospitalists and infectious diseases physicians (2019)


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Laura Byerly, MD


Design and implementation of an interprofessional learning elective in a skilled nursing facility; Qualitative study of role fluidity among students participating in an interprofessional elective (2018)


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Rosalind De Lisser, RN, MS, NP

Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner

Development and evaluation of a curriculum for psychiatric NP residents; Needs assessment for interprofessional clinician educators (2017)


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Leslie Floren, PharmD, MAEd


Design and implementation of an interprofessional learning elective in a skilled nursing facility; Qualitative study of knowledge construction among students participating in an interprofessional elective (2017)


Program Options

Fellows will have the opportunity to work closely with existing programs in the SFVA that can benefit from assistance with focused evaluation and research projects. Formal training will be provided by UCSF, which consists of two options:

Option 1: Health Professions Education Pathway to Discovery

In Option 1, fellows may enroll in the Health Professions Education Pathway to Discovery, a year-long program that trains students, residents and fellows to be future leaders, innovators, and scholars.

Option 2: Teaching Scholars Program and Teach for UCSF Certificate Programs

In Option 2, fellows may enroll in the Teaching Scholars Program, a year-long, half-day-a-week academic program that trains faculty members to be educational leaders, innovators, and scholars. Fellows may also enroll in Teach for UCSF Certificate Programs which include defined educational paths so that individuals can develop the focused teaching skills they choose and receive a certificate in recognition of achievement. The certificate programs can also be an option for fellows who complete the HPE Pathways to Discovery program. Interested faculty and trainees may inquire about the option to pursue an MA degree in education during this fellowship.

Option 3: UCSF - Utrecht University Medical Center

In Option 3, qualified fellows may enroll in the UCSF's Collaborative Doctoral Program in Health Professions Education with Utrecht University Medical Center (UMC Utrecht). This is an approximately four-year, part-time doctoral program with intense mentoring on educational research. In both programs, fellows will learn about theories of teaching and learning, innovative teaching practices, assessment and evaluation, leadership, research and scholarship, and VA programs and data systems.

Program Details

Applicants must have completed accredited residency training in a medical specialty or advanced training in a nursing or associated health specialty. 

The stipend rate will be based on years of previously completed ACGME or AOA accredited residency training and equivalent experiences as determined by OAA and index rates approved at the affiliated university and the respective VA facility.

Physicians, nurses, and associated health fellows will spend approximately 70 percent of their time in training, development, and implementation of projects related to the practice and advancement of healthcare education.  No more than 30 percent of time shall be spent in direct clinical care. Fellows must conduct the majority of their clinical care and clinical education responsibilities at a VA facility.  Should a site wish to have fellows conduct these activities at non-VA sites, prior written approval from the Office of Academic Affiliations must be obtained. Fellows are expected to carry out the majority of their research and educational activities at a VA facility. Access monthly seminar schedule for more information.

Application Process and Instructions

Application Timeline

  • Prior to applying, please contact Bridget O’Brien to schedule a meeting to discuss which option best fits your goals. If interested in pursuing a Master’s of Arts in Education, please contact Bridget O’Brien at least 18 months before the anticipated start date.
  • Notification: Approximately 30 days after the application date.
  • Earliest program start date: flexible.

To apply to the fellowship:

1. Prepare an application packet, including: 

  • Download VA Fellowship Application Form
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Letter of Support acknowledging release time
    • Trainees: from residency or fellowship program director
    • Faculty: from the department chair or division chief

2. Assemble into a single .pdf document.

3. E-mail application and contact if you have any questions prior to application submission: Bridget O’Brien, PhD, Professor of Medicine, Center for Faculty Educators,

Co-sponsored by UCSF Center for Faculty Educators and the VA Office of Academic Affiliation (OAA)