Educational Principles

The ETC is based firmly on adult learning principles:

  • learning from experience – drawing on 30-40 common trauma incidents within 10 workshops
  • social constructivism – capitalising on existing knowledge, skills and affect, and building on this
  • situated learning – making the learning environment psychologically “real” and located in day to day experience of candidates
  • group dynamics – with an emphasis on effective group management.

Accordingly, the course is predominantly practical:
+++– two lectures
+++– one faculty demonstration
+++– ten workshops
+++– assessment
with an emphasis on the team management of realistic trauma cases from both clinical and non-clinical perspectives. Accordingly, candidates experience well designed simulation workshops under the guidance of two instructors who provide essential feedback to contribute towards individual and group learning. Assessment is formative and continuous during the first two days and there is a summative team leadership assessment on the last day.

ETC learning objectives


Team Approach
To understand leadership and task allocation within a trauma team
To understand responsibilities of a trauma team member
To understand communication within the team
To understand communication with non-team members
+++– Patient and his/her family
+++– Ambulance control
+++– Paramedics
+++– Other specialists
+++– Non-medical staff


Resuscitation Skills
Patient assessment and prioritising
Airway management
+++ – Basic airway management
+++ – Principles of advanced airway management
+++ – Alternative airways, escape strategies
Shock recognition, haemorrhage control and shock treatment
Vascular access
Recognition and treatment of
+++– Traumatic brain injury
+++– Thoracic injuries
+++– Abdominal and pelvic injuries
+++– Spinal injuries
+++– Injuries to the extremities
+++– Thermal injuries
Special aspects of trauma care
X-Ray and CT interpretation


Advanced Knowledge and Skills
Prioritising in the multi-trauma patient
Decision making under pressure
Trauma management and advanced treatment plans
Cooperation between the specialties


For more information about the approaches, see Chapter 13 of the Course Manual and Chapter 1 of Mike Davis and Kirsty Forrest (2008),  How to teach continuing medical education.