University of Oulu

Conn R.L., Gormley G.J., O’Hare S., Kajamaa A. (2021) Activity Theory in Health Professions Education Research and Practice. In: Nestel D., Reedy G., McKenna L., Gough S. (eds) Clinical Education for the Health Professions. Springer, Singapore.

Activity theory in health professions education research and practice

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Author: Conn, Richard L.1; Gormley, Gerard J.1; O’Hare, Sarah1;
Organizations: 1Centre for Medical Education Queen’s University Belfast, Belfast, UK
2Faculty of Education, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: embargoed
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Springer, 2021
Publish Date: 2023-10-16


This chapter describes activity theory (AT) and its emerging role within health professions education (HPE). We outline AT’s historical roots, before exploring its concepts and theoretical models in detail. We then describe its practical applications in HPE, in both analysis and intervention, before concluding with a discussion of its rich future possibilities.

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ISBN: 978-981-13-6106-7
Pages: 1 - 24
DOI: 10.1007/978-981-13-6106-7_30-1
Host publication: Clinical education for the health professions
Host publication editor: Nestel, Debra
Reedy, Gabriel
McKenna, Lisa
Gough, Suzanne
Type of Publication: A3 Book chapter
Field of Science: 516 Educational sciences
Copyright information: © 2021 Springer. This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article published in Clinical Education for the Health Professions. The final authenticated version is available online at