Implicit Theories of Professors of Medicine Regarding the Teaching-Learning Process

Teorías implícitas sobre el proceso enseñanza-aprendizaje de profesores de medicina
Yolanda García Yáñeza, David Moreno-Candilb, *, Aurora Candil Ruiza, Senddey Macías Ávilac y Marco Antonio Jiménez Rodríguezc

aDepartamento de Microbiología y Parasitología, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Cd. Mx., México.
bDepartamento de Ciencias Sociales y Humanidades, Universidad Autónoma de Occidente, Culiacán, Sin., México.
cFacultad de Medicina, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Cd. Mx., México.

Recibido: 18-enero-2019. Aceptado: 3-mayo-2019.

* Autor para correspondencia: Dr. David Moreno Candil. Blvd. Lola Beltrán S/N, Col. 4 de Marzo, Culiacán, Sinaloa, C.P. 80120. Teléfono: 55 4533 5384; 66 7759 1300. Correo electrónico:

La revisión por pares es responsabilidad de la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. 2007-5057/© 2020 Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Facultad de Medicina. Este es un artículo Open Access bajo la licencia CC BY-NC-ND ( ).

Palabras Clave

Teorías implícitas; pensamiento del profesorado; enseñanza; aprendizaje.


Implicit theories; professor`s conceptions; learning; teaching.


Introduction: The current demands of society towards medical professionals have led to the reformulation of curricula in medical schools. In order to be successful, the restructuring of academic programs must take into account how professors think and assimilate certain aspects regarding the teaching/learning process. The Sociocontructivist Model of Implicit Theories is one of the approaches in the study of the conceptions of teachers regarding teaching and learning.

Objective: To explore the implicit theories regarding the teaching/learning process of faculty members of the Microbiology and Parasitology Department of the School of Medicine of the National Autonomous University of Mexico.

Method: The “Professor`s Implicit Theories of Teaching Questionnaire” was administered to a sample of faculty members (n = 40) responsible for the Microbiology and Parasitology course from the medical surgeon bachelor program. The participants were selected through a stratified sampling process that guaranteed the participation of 25% of the student population registered in the given course.

Results: Different levels of acceptance were observed in each of the implicit theories about teaching. Statistically significant differences were found through a Friedman test in the typicality of the implicit theories of teaching (χ 2 [4, n = 40] = 90.388, p < 0.001), the interpretive theory was the most accepted and the emancipatory theory the one that was most rejected by faculty members.

Conclusion: Generally speaking, participants’ implicit theories regarding the teaching/learning process are proximal to current thought regarding education, however, a more detailed look at specific elements of faculty members’ conceptions illustrate the persistence of contradictory beliefs, this can make the transition towards new educational models difficult.