One Minute Preceptor

Known as the One Minute Preceptor or Five Step Micro-skills approach to educational situations. This approach provides a structure to educating on the go to ensure effective preceptorship and feedback is provided, especially in a busy clinical environment.

What is it?

  • Educating on the go.
  • Make the most of teaching time.
  • Microlearning: Fits in with learners faced with time poor situations.
  • Effective preceptorship structure.
  • Role modelling.

Five imperatives (or micro-skills):

  1.  Get a commitment.
  2.  Probe for supporting evidence.
  3.  Teach general rules.
  4. Reinforce what was done right.
  5. Correct mistakes.

Aim of The Approach

  • Deeper level discussion.
  • Promote discussion.
  • Provide feedback.
  • Increase student satisfaction and learning.
  • Confidence to the preceptor.


Aagaard, E., Teherani, A., & Irby, D. M. (2004). Effectiveness of the one-minute preceptor model for diagnosing the patient and the learner: proof of concept. Academic medicine, 79(1), 42-49.

Neher, J. O., Gordon, K. C., Meyer, B., & Stevens, N. (1992). A five-step “microskills” model of clinical teaching. The Journal of the American Board of Family Practice, 5(4), 419-424.



What is Microlearning?

(a.k.a. micro learning or micro-learning)

Agile learning on the go and designed to fit into work schedules, down time or public transport journeys. Breaks education into small units and learning tasks for microcontent focus. Burns-Johnson (2016) state the core characteristics of microlearning are:

  • Short (on the go).
  • Focused learning (one skill or topic).
  • Multi-platform (any device any location).

Education Theory

  • Prevents information overload (chunking theory).
  • Teaching for a world of internet, computer games and television where we have constant access to a globalised resource pool of information.
  • Problem solving helps fill in the knowledge gaps.
  • Personalised learning approach.


  • An ever changing world requires quick responses in work and private life.
  • Anytime & anyplace learning.
  • Increasing use of mobile devices for learning (M-Learning).
  • Learners expect interactivity.

The Againsts

  • Traditional teaching approach reluctant to change.
  • Relies on network connectivity.
  • Small screen.
  • Variability in platforms.

Some Attention Statistics (from Statistic Brain)

  • Attention span in 2000 – 12 seconds
  • Attention span in 2015 – 8.25 seconds
  • Attention span of a goldfish – 9 seconds


Burns-Johnson, E. (2016) A Bite-Sized Guide to Microlearning. Allen Interactions.

Bruck, P. A., Motiwalla, L., & Foerster, F. (2012). Mobile learning with micro-content: a framework and evaluation. Bled eConference, 25th Bled eConference eDependability: Reliable and Trustworthy eStructures, eProcesses, eOperations and eServices for the Future, 17-20.

Gassler, G., Hug, T., & Glahn, C. (2004). Integrated Micro Learning–An outline of the basic method and first results. Interactive Computer Aided Learning, 4.

Traditional Training vs the Bite Size Approach Infographic
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