About Javier Benitez, MD

ALiEM Featured Contributor

Motivation and Self Determination Theory

10420415-illustration-ball-with-inscription-motivation-on-a-white-backgroundMotivation is one of those important elements in our personalities that helps us have a drive for improvement. Motivation can come in two flavors internal and external. Self determination theory (SDT) is a psychological term which explains people’s internal motivation and determination to their behavior. Edward L. Deci and Richard M. Ryan explored SDT further and determined there were three basic needs in every human, which are universal, not learned, and seen across gender and culture.


By |2017-03-05T14:18:36-08:00Sep 6, 2013|Education Articles, Medical Education|

Open Educational Resources


The Internet has not only facilitated connectivity between people, but it has also helped us to connect with educational material quite different from that of a physical textbook. We are consuming information at a much more rapid rate, and we are also becoming producers of content online. With the use of hyperlinks we are also connecting one content material with another, allowing for a more dynamic-instantaneous flow of knowledge as opposed to the static print in a physical textbook. People have started seeing the potential that this brings to education and are placing educational content online. These educational materials include lectures, videos, images, textbooks to name a few.


By |2018-01-30T02:15:21-08:00Aug 31, 2013|Medical Education, Social Media & Tech|

Retrieval Practice: 10 benefits of testing

TestchoicesTests terrify people, especially when used for summative assessment. But in reality, tests have also helped students learn the material. Retrieval practice, also known as test enhanced learning or the testing effect, has been demonstrated to have more benefits than re-studying the material or multiple choice tests. As per Henry L. Roediger et al.

If students are quizzed frequently, they tend to study more and with more regularity. Quizzes also permit students to discover gaps in their knowledge and focus study efforts on difficult material; furthermore, when students study after taking a test, they learn more from the study episode than if they had not taken the test…


By |2019-02-19T18:08:43-08:00Aug 19, 2013|Medical Education|

Should physicians be trained as “knowledge workers”?

Internet_map_1024According to Wikipedia a Knowledge Worker is someone whose main job is to employ creative, divergent, convergent thinking to solve problems with the help of searching new information. In the 21st century these Knowledge Workers may use Internet tools, such as social media, to form a collaborative network of expertise. These networks might be open or not. There are plenty of companies using knowledge management in order to optimize their performance.


By |2016-11-11T18:37:08-08:00Jun 19, 2013|Medical Education, Social Media & Tech|

Review: Emergency Medicine: Avoiding The Pitfalls and Improving The Outcomes

A pitfall is defined as “an unapparent source of trouble or danger; a hidden hazard” by thefreedictionary.com

In the book Emergency Medicine: Avoiding the Pitafalls and Improving the Outcomes edited by Dr. Amal Mattu along with Dr. Deepi Goyal, you can find many pitfalls that should be considered when managing patients in the emergency department. The book, relatively affordable ($57) when it comes to print hard-bound textbooks, consists of 13 quick-read chapters of common chief complaints in emergency medicine. Some of the authors in this book include: Drs. Peter DeBlieux, Jairo Quintanilla, Robert Rogers, Michael Winters, and others. 

By |2016-11-11T18:37:29-08:00May 20, 2013|Medical Education|

Improving Consultation Communication Skills

Talking to colleagues is an essential skill especially as we advocate for our patients. We should not only know what’s going on with our patients, but also how to communicate our thoughts effectively and succinctly with our colleagues. In a great article by Dr. Chad Kessler et al 1 just published Academic Medicine, the authors state that although “communication skills may not develop naturally, [they] can be taught and fostered through evidence-based educational models.”

By |2016-12-20T10:02:45-08:00May 13, 2013|Education Articles, Medical Education|