Re-examining the integration of routine and adaptive expertise: there is no such thing as routine from a motor control perspective
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The study of adaptive expertise in health professions education has focused almost exclusively on cognitive skills, largely ignoring the processes of adaptation in the performance of precision technical skills. We present a focused review of literature to argue that repetitive practice is much less repetitive than often perceived. Our main thesis is that all skilled movement reflects components of adaptive expertise. Through an overview of perspectives from the field of motor control and learning, we emphasize the interplay between the inherent noisiness of the human motor architecture and the stability of motor skill performances. Ultimately, we challenge the very idea of routine. Our goal is threefold: to reconcile common misconceptions about the rote nature of routine precision skill performance, to offer educators principles to enhance adaptive expertise as an outcome of precision skill training, and to expand the conversation between 'routine' and 'adaptive' forms of expertise in health professions education.
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