The Academic Leagues in the Health Area: Knowledge Gaps from the Brazilian Scientific Production

ABSTRACT Academic Leagues are powerful strategies developed in health training, which integrate teaching, research and extension activities, carried out by the students and supervised by teachers. The objective of this work, therefore, is to investigate Brazilian scientific production about academic leagues in order to identify knowledge gaps. This is a study into the state of affairs based on searches in the Virtual Health Library and the CAPES Data Bank of Theses and Dissertations. The keyword “academic leagues” was used with the following guiding question: “What scientific production is there regarding academic leagues?” After detailed analysis, 24 pieces of work were selected for the final sample of the study. It was found that medicine stands out in the study of the theme, with the Brazilian Journal of Medical Education being the periodical that has published the most articles on the theme. It was also identified that the following types of study prevailed: case studies and editorial reports. The case studies were mainly related to experiences in leagues by specialties and undergraduate courses. Also of note were works regarding the standardization of the academic leagues, and academic leagues and health training as an object of study. Academic Leagues have been growing throughout Brazil, with an emphasis on medical courses as precursors to these initiatives. The main contributions they offer to health education are the promotion of training based on the reality with which future professionals will be engaged, the capacity to stimulate teamwork, critical reflection, and student autonomy. However, some challenges are recognized, such as early specialization and lack of effective teacher supervision. From the tripod of the university, academic leagues have the possibility to promote a differentiated health training, anticipating the insertion of the trainees in practical settings, and filling the knowledge gaps found in undergraduate training based on an autonomous student-led approach, besides providing teaching-service-community integration.