Integrating Case Topics in Medical School Curriculum to Enhance Multiple Skill Learning: Using Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders as an Exemplary Case
ABSTRACT This article describes the use of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) as a theme to connect the learning of basic neurosciences with clinical applications across the age span within a systems-based, integrated curricular structure that emphasizes problem-based learning.
In collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, the Western Regional Training Center for Fetal Alcohol Exposure at UCLA developed and integrated educational materials on FASDs into the curriculum for first-year medical students.
Quantitative and qualitative evaluations suggested materials were effective in enhancing student knowledge and skills related to FASDs, as well as embryology, brain development, substance abuse, developmental psychopathology, and medical ethics.
The use of a unifying theme integrating basic science and clinical information and skills is effective for medical student training in the prevention and treatment of common medical problems.
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ABSTRACT: Objective. To describe the development of an integrated pain and palliative care course and to investigate the long-term effectiveness of the course during doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) students' advanced pharmacy practice experiences (APPEs) and in their practice after graduation. Design. Roseman University College of Pharmacy faculty developed a 3-week elective course in pain and palliative care by integrating relevant clinical and pharmaceutical sciences. Instructional strategies included lectures, team and individual activities, case studies, and student presentations. Assessment. Students who participated in the course in 2010 and 2011 were surveyed anonymously to gain their perception about the class as well as the utility of the course during their APPEs and in their everyday practice. Traditional and nontraditional assessment of students confirmed that the learning outcomes objectives were achieved. Conclusions. Students taking the integrated course on pain management and palliative care achieved mastery of the learning outcome objectives. Surveys of students and practicing pharmacists who completed the course showed that the learning experience as well as retention was improved with the integrated mode of teaching. Integrating basic and clinical sciences in therapeutic courses is an effective learning strategy.American journal of pharmaceutical education 08/2013; 77(6):121. DOI:10.5688/ajpe776121 · 1.19 Impact Factor