Learning a complex skill: communication


This study raised a few eye-brows with the puzzling finding that communication does not grow across 3 years of intense communication training in general practice. What is wrong here? Back to the drawing board!


Communication is not a generic skill, but a highly contextual one, all depending the goals of the encounter.

The context therefore has an impact on the assessment of communication skills.

Communication is also highly dependent on the cultural context.

Communication training needs to be adapted to the cultural context. This is a model for South-East Asia.


This study beautifully shows how communication skills are fostered, learned, internalized and clinically used in a versatile way as part of a flexible clinical repertoire of the professional. 


A very intuitive and explanative model on how communication skills are learned in actual clinical practice.