Background: With increasing physician mobility, there is interest in how medical schools and postgraduate medical education institutions across the world develop and maintain the competence of medical teachers. Published reviews of faculty development (FD) have predominantly included studies from the United States and Canada. Objective: We synthesized the international FD literature (beyond the US and Canada), focusing on FD type, intended audience, study format, effectiveness, differences among countries, and potential unique features. Methods: We identified English-language publications that addressed FD for medical faculty for teaching and related activities, excluding US and Canadian publications. Results: A search of 4 databases identified 149 publications, including 83 intervention studies. There was significant growth in international FD publications for the most recent decade, and a sizable number of studies were from developing economies and/or resulted from international collaborations. Focal areas echo those in earlier published reviews, suggesting the international FD literature addresses similar faculty needs and organizational concerns. Conclusions: The growth in publications in recent years and a higher proportion of reporting on participant reactions, coupled with less frequent reporting of results, transfer to practice, and impact on learners and the organization, suggest this is an evolving field. To enhance international FD, educators and researchers should focus on addressing common needs expressed by faculty, including curriculum design and evaluation, small group teaching, assessing professionalism and providing feedback. Future research should focus on approaches for developing comprehensive institutional FD programs that include communities of learning and practice and evaluating their impact.
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