For most of us, acquiring knowledge has been a fairly linear, unidirectional process—monolithic (and increasingly heavy) textbooks; graphically sophisticated, slide-supported lectures; journal articles multiplying logarithmically—we absorb and then apply. Certainly our patients have benefited from the avalanche of data and evidence that threatens to overwhelm us. Technology transfer is rapid, and thanks to the Internet and the post office, the results of carefully designed and meticulously implemented clinical trials are widely available and are easily accessed.
Unfortunately, the slightly darker side of this process comes in the finding of health services researchers that education per se does not necessarily lead to the adoption of new standards and the “tell them you have built it and they will come” approach frequently does not attract players to the field. Fortunately, communications and education experts have stepped in and the new by-word in effective teaching has become “interactive.” Unlike the passive acquisition of information that we may be used to, interactive learning calls on us to inform educators of our needs, examine our deficiencies, receive an instant evaluation of our educational accomplishments, and provide feedback to our mentors so that they too can benefit from the process.
The result is that new information is not only noted; it becomes incorporated into practice. The reason: Buy-in.
The question then becomes: why a new journal? Is JNCCN bucking the future by delivering a paperbound, linear, unidirectional teaching tool—attractive and oncologically interesting but still a relic of an outdated approach?
We hope not.
In each issue...
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Rodger J. Winn is the Editor-in-Chief of JNCCN, as well as chair of the NCCN's Guidelines Steering and Principal Investigators Committees. His past positions include Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. Dr. Winn received his medical degree from Jefferson Medical College of Philadelphia. His postgraduate training includes an internship and residency at Jefferson Medical College, and he also completed a medical oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York. He is board certified in internal medicine and holds subspecialty certification in oncology.