Teaming basic scientists with clinicians may improve medical education retention

medical school
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

There is a trend in modern medical school curriculum design to integrate the basic sciences and clinical sciences. Integrating basic science education with its clinical application from the initial stages of learning is thought to improve retention of information and facilitate the transfer of knowledge to the clinical setting.

Basic science educators are not clinicians, yet to accommodate integration they must adjust their content to mesh appropriately with its . While achievable, this is a challenge that requires intentional effort on the part of the basic science educators.

Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) believe a practical way to facilitate curricular integration is to create opportunities for basic science educators to learn about the clinical application of their area of expertise through shadowing and collaborations with clinician educators and to pair these initiatives with training in effective medical education practices.

"By shadowing clinician educators during or clinical teaching, basic scientists can observe how clinicians apply basic science concepts. Such opportunities help basic science educators better understand how to prioritize and communicate information that has long-term relevance for their learners," explains corresponding author M. Isabel Dominguez, Ph.D., assistant professor of medicine at BUSM.

Most medical schools are wrestling with the challenge of integration in medical education. Dominguez along with co-author Ann Zumwalt, Ph.D., BUSM associate professor of anatomy & neurobiology, discuss practical strategies to develop these opportunities and how they benefit educators.

They believe there are numerous ways that both individuals and institutions can create and facilitate such faculty development opportunities, both for basic science faculty who are full-time educators and those who engage in medical education part time. "Ultimately, these interventions and initiatives will benefit both the institution's curriculum and the student learners impacted by the curriculum," adds Zumwalt.


Explore further

New BU program prepares trainees for teaching modern, integrated medical curriculum

More information: Isabel Dominguez et al, Integrating the basic sciences in medical curricula: focus on the basic scientists, Advances in Physiology Education (2020). DOI: 10.1152/advan.00172.2019
Citation: Teaming basic scientists with clinicians may improve medical education retention (2020, March 4) retrieved 4 December 2020 from https://phys.org/news/2020-03-teaming-basic-scientists-clinicians-medical.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
6 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments