COMSEP 2009 Baltimore Meeting with APPD
INITIATING A BASIC SCIENCE CURRICULUM IN THE PEDIATRIC 4TH YEAR CLERKSHIP
Irene Hong-McAtee, MD, Hubert O. Ballard, MD, Chris Nelson, MD, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY
BACKGROUND: Only 19% of US medical schools offer “capstone courses” to refresh their senior medical students in the basic sciences (Spencer et al, Acad Med, July 2008). To our knowledge, our curriculum is one of the first attempts to integrate basic science knowledge in understanding clinical pediatrics. The objectives were to 1) To re-introduce 4th-yr med students who have chosen pediatric careers to basic science concepts that lead to a deeper understanding of pediatric cases, so that they may become more astute clinicians, and 2) to foster independent learning and development of teaching skills through preparation of weekly presentations to their peers and professors. STRUCTURE: 4 different cases were presented, 1 case per week of a 4-wk 4th-yr pediatric clerkship. Each weekly topic included a Tuesday and a Friday session, and was taught by a different pair of professors. On Tuesdays, 1st a clinical vignette was presented by a Clinical Pediatrician, during which students formulate differential diagnoses and recommendations for treatment. Then, a Basic Science Faculty presented physiology of the disease and mechanisms of treatment. Finally, students and faculty brainstormed about further questions that were raised by the faculty presentations. These led to assigned or chosen topics that students researched for the remainder of the week. On Fridays, the basic scientist, clinical pediatrician, and students reconvened to listen to the student-led PowerPoint presentations, which were expected to be concise and evidence-based. Evaluation (data collection ongoing): 1) Each student received a written summary of the weekly evaluations by each faculty pair. 2)Evaluation of the effectiveness of the curriculum was based on A)student evaluations of the curriculum and teachers, using Likert scales, and B)increase in individual student knowledge of the 4 pediatric topics, i.e., change in score from pre- to post-test. FUTURE DIRECTIONS/CONCLUSIONS: include expanding to a free-standing elective and fostering interdisciplinary interaction by recruiting graduate students in the basic sciences, pharmacy and nursing.