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Faculty Profiles : Dr. Anna T. Cianciolo

Anna T. Cianciolo
Anna T. Cianciolo, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Medical Education

913 N Rutledge St., Rm. 1233
P.O. Box 19681
Springfield, IL 62794-9681
217-545-0123 (phone), 217-545-0120 (fax)

Educational Background | Research Interests & Projects | Teaching Interests & Activities | Selected Publications & Presentations | Grants/Honors

Educational Background

  • Ph.D. 2001 Georgia Institute of Technology Engineering Psychology
  • M.A. 1997 University of Minnesota, Twin Cities Cognitive & Biological Psychology
  • B.A. 1995 University of Michigan, Ann Arbor Psychology

Research Interests & Projects

Dr. Cianciolo's research focuses on assessing and improving the performance of individuals and groups, particularly in the conduct of collaborative problem solving. Her approach conceptualizes problem solving success as the achievement of individual, group, and environmental fit. Rather than targeting knowledge, skills, and abilities, this approach addresses the behaviors that enable individuals or groups to effectively select, adapt to, or shape their working environment. This approach enables the specification of performance objectives and assessment criteria that promote transfer of learning within environments that share common features. Dr. Cianciolo's research investigates collaborative problem solving in a variety of contexts, including classroom instruction, communities of practice, and live and simulated teamwork.

  • Adult professional learning, including student-centered instructional design, social learning, technology-assisted instruction, and faculty development.
  • Performance-based assessment, including leadership, interprofessional collaboration, computer-supported cooperative work, and experience-based, tacit knowledge.
  • Educational program evaluation.
  • Negotiation and mediation skill acquisition.
  • Research methodology and multivariate statistical analysis.

Teaching Interests & Activities

  • Learner assessment and diagnosis
  • Student-centered instructional design
  • Technology-assisted instruction
  • Research design and methodology
  • Statistics
  • Human factors
  • Individual differences psychology
  • Leadership
  • Interests-based negotiation
  • Collaborative problem solving

Selected Publications & Presentations

Journal Publications

  • Emke, A. R., Cheng, S., Dufault, C., Cianciolo, A. T., Musick, D., Richards, B., & Violato, C. (in press). Conversation starter: Developing professionalism via multi-source feedback in team-based learning. Teaching and Learning in Medicine.
  • Kost, A., Combs, H., Smith, S., Klein, E., Kritek, P., Robins, L., Cianciolo, A. T., Butani, L., Gigante, J., & Ramani, S. (in press). Conversation starter: A proposed conceptual framework and investigation of upward feedback receptivity in medical education. Teaching and Learning in Medicine.
  • Rougas, S., Clyne, B., Cianciolo, A. T., Chan T. M., Sherbino, J., & Yarris, L. M. (in press). Conversation starter: An extended validity argument for assessing feedback culture. Teaching and Learning in Medicine.
  • West, C., Landry, K., Graham, A., Graham, L., Cianciolo, A. T., Kalet, A., Rosen, M., & Sherman, D. W. (in press). Conversation starter: Conceptualizing interprofessional teams as multi-team systems - Implications for assessment and training. Teaching and Learning in Medicine.
  • Cianciolo, A. T. (2014). Deciding what to teach health professionals: a human-centered systems engineering perspective. Medical Education, 48, 1150-56.
  • Colliver, J. A., & Cianciolo, A. T. (2014). When is enough, enough? Judging the sufficiency of evidence in medical education. Medical Education, 48, 740-741
  • Sims, J., Altheimer, A., Kidd, B., McNeeley, C., Ryan, D., Adams, C., & Cianciolo, A. T. (2014). What is medical education? Assessing The Oxford Textbook of Medical Education. Teaching & Learning in Medicine, 26(4), 428-430.
  • Williams, R.G., Klamen, D.L., Markwell, S.J., Cianciolo, A.T., Colliver, J.A., & Verhulst, S.J. (2014). Does heterogenous medical student clinical experience yield sufficient diagnostic justification proficiency? Academic Medicine.
  • Cianciolo A. Critical Synthesis Package: Cultural Competence OSCE (ccOSCE). MedEdPORTAL; 2013. Available from:
  • Cianciolo AT, Williams RG, Klamen DL, Roberts NK. Biomedical knowledge, clinical cognition, and diagnostic justification: A structural equation model. Med Educ 2013; 47(3): 309-16.
  • Cianciolo AT, Kegg JA. Behavioral specification of the entrustment process. JGME; 2013.
  • Cianciolo, A. T., & Lower, T. (2012). Implementing a student-centered fourth year curriculum: initial findings. Medical Education, 46, 1107-1108.


  • Cianciolo, A. T., & Sternberg, R. J. (2004). Intelligence: A brief history. Malden, MA: Blackwell.
  • Antonakis, J., Cianciolo, A. T., & Sternberg, R. J. (Eds.). (2004). The nature of leadership. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Book Chapters

  • Cianciolo, A. T. (2014). Intelligence: History and controversies. In D. C. Philips (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Educational Theory and Philosophy (pp. 417-421). Sage.
  • DeCostanza, A. H., DiRosa, G. A., Jiménez-Rodriguez, M., & Cianciolo, A. T. (2014). No mission too difficult: Army units within exponentially complex multiteam systems. In E. Salas, M. Shuffler, & R. Rico (Eds.), Pushing the boundaries: Multiteam systems in research and practice (pp. 61-76). Emerald Group Publishing, Ltd.
  • Cianciolo AT, Evans KM. Distributed communities of practice. In JD Lee & A Kirlik (Eds.), Handbook of Cognitive Engineering (pp. 610-621). New York: Oxford University Press; 2013.
  • Cianciolo, A. T., Evans, K. M., DeCostanza, A., & Pierce, L. (2011). Trust in distributed operations. In N. A. Stanton (Ed.), Trust in military teams (pp.89-106). Surrey: Ashgate.
  • Cianciolo, A. T., Matthew, C., Wagner, R. K., & Sternberg, R. J. (2006). Tacit knowledge, practical intelligence, and expertise. In K. A. Ericsson, N. Charness, P. Feltovich, & R. Hoffman (Eds.), Cambridge Handbook of Expertise and Expert Performance (pp. 613-632). New York: Cambridge University Press.
  • Cianciolo, A. T., Antonakis, J., & Sternberg, R. J. (2004). Practical intelligence and leadership: Using experience as a "mentor". In D. V. Day, S. Zaccaro, & S. Halpin (Eds.), Leader development for transforming organizations – Growing leaders for tomorrow (pp. 211-236). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.


  • Klamen, D. L., Han, H., Williams, R. G., Cianciolo, A. T., & Satorius, A. Clinical Clerkships: Does the Emperor Have No Clothes? Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE) Annual Meeting, Glasgow, United Kingdom, September 2015
  • Cianciolo, A. T. Invited presenter, CDIM-APDIM Joint Pre-Course “Approaching Research in Medical Education: Beginner’s Basics and Beyond,” Atlanta, GA, October 2015.
  • Cianciolo, A. T. Clinical Teaching Innovations at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine. Invited presentation for Aichi Medical University, Nagoya, Japan, October 2015.
  • Cianciolo, A. T. AAMC Meet the Editor. Association of American Medical Colleges Medical Education Research Meeting, Baltimore, MD, November 2015.
  • Gruppen, L., Cottrell, S., de Jong, P. G. M., Cianciolo, A. T., & Cymet, T. Editors' Eye View. The Generalists in Medical Education Annual Conference, Baltimore, MD, November 2015.


  • Cianciolo, A. T. (P.I. – Subcontract) Advanced Assessment to Accelerate Diagnostic Skill Acquisition. National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), National Institutes of Health. (Prime contractor – Parallel Consulting, LLC). Funded, $144,721. April 2014 – March 2015.
  • Cianciolo, A. T. (PI), & Roberts, N. K. (Co-PI). An Integrative, Multi-Disciplinary Review of Small-Group Collaborative Learning. Society of Directors of Research in Medical Education. Funded, $4000. November 2011 – October 2013.
  • Cianciolo, A. T. (P.I. – Subcontract). Information and Decision Dynamics in Network Centric Environments. U.S. Army Research, Development, and Engineering Command. (Prime contractor – Aptima, Inc.). Funded, $9,990. June 2011 – November 2011.