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November 17, 1978

Continuing Medical Education: Perspectives, Problems, Prognosis

JAMA. 1978;240(21):2332. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03290210114049

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Richards's writing had its origin in his PhD dissertation (1975), which presumably has undergone extension and embellishment to reach book form. As a means of expressing his studies and expounding his ideas, the author uses force-field analysis—a term that probably will be unfamiliar to most readers. He explains the meaning twice, first in chapter 1 and later and more fully in a brief appendix where he tells that the use of a force-field process permits analysis of the interaction of driving and restraining forces.

The greater part of Richards's book constitutes an excellent summary of the 20th-century reform and improvement of medical education at all levels, a progression that has been largely from within medicine and more recently influenced by a variety of governmental (state and federal) interventions. Scattered throughout the text are 14 well-executed tables that greatly reinforce the written material. Indeed, if a hurried reader were only to