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‘I’m too busy to teach’. Tips for teaching when time is tight
  1. Diarmuid McLaughlin1,
  2. Melissa Mulholland2,
  3. Dearbhla McKenna1,
  4. Peter Mallett2,
  5. Julie Lewis3
  1. 1 Paediatric Rheumatology, Musgrave Park Hospital, Belfast, UK
  2. 2 Paediatrics, Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children, Belfast, UK
  3. 3 General Paediatrics, Daisy Hill Hospital, Newry, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Diarmuid McLaughlin, Dept of Paediatric Rheumatology, Musgrave Park Hospital, Belfast BT9 7JB, UK; dmclaughlin{at}


Prioritising teaching when clinical practice is hectic can be difficult. Often teaching is seen to be confined to formal structured events. This article aims to highlight the abundance of learning opportunities that arise outside of such formal teaching events in daily clinical practice. It first discusses the qualities and skills of a time-efficient, yet effective, teacher. Practical suggestions are then provided in order to maximise learning from important opportunities that occur daily from handovers, ward rounds, clinics to tea-trolley teaching aiming to give encouragement to all that valuable teaching is possible even when time is limited.

  • child health
  • paediatrics

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  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.