Wednesday, August 26 | 11 AM CT

Working with volunteer faculty and experts is at the core of every association’s educational mission. Yet it’s common to hear that member experts lack respect for staff’s attempts to apply innovative new formats and instructional-design best practices. The problem is perhaps especially acute in healthcare, where traditional CE modalities and professional hierarchies still often hold sway. Consider a major professional development initiative involving many SMEs at a large healthcare association in light of a five-point model for SME collaboration.

Based on PhD research in education leadership, the model focuses on building a collaborative, productive relationship between subject matter experts (SMEs) and education staff. Then, group activities are employed for soliciting stories from participants on what works when collaborating with experts. Using the model and your own stories, develop a take-home playbook to improve the quality and productivity of your collaboration with volunteer faculty and experts.



  • Learn from the experiences of their peers in working with SMEs.
  • Describe the cultural and historical forces that tend to interfere with collaboration with SMEs.
  • Systematically foster collaboration between subject matter experts and education teams using five simple principles.
  • Develop take-home playbook for establishing collaboration between subject matter experts and education teams.