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Key Dates/Activities in ISTEP History


  • Study of the medical school learning environment is launched.
  • Annual meeting held in October.


  • The AMA assists the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) in launching the NIDAMED Web site, a physician resource for information on substance abuse.
  • Completion of the Sound Prescribing grant, which examined the impact of pharmaceutical marketing practices on physician prescribing behaviors.
  • ISTEP looks at research projects aimed at medical students, residents and practicing physicians, including a study of the medical school learning environment.
  • Administration of ISTEP moves from the AMA Ethics department to Medical Education.


  • The NIDA initiative produces 11 curriculum products.
  • ISTEP is featured on a panel presentation at the Association of American Medical Colleges' national meeting. Other ISTEP schools make ISTEP-related presentations to various regional and national organizations.
  • ISTEP considers proposal for a prospective longitudinal study of medical students.


  • In February, all 16 teams agree to move ahead to officially establish ISTEP.
  • ISTEP goal is established: To be the premier transformational medical education research collaborative focused on identifying the connections between educational efforts across all learner levels (students, residents/fellows and practicing physicians) and improved patient care outcomes.
  • An ISTEP steering group with representation from each school is formed, as well as a five-member executive committee.
  • A contract from NIDA, through JBS International, is awarded to the AMA and eight ISTEP schools to develop an array of substance abuse-focused content and curriculum materials for medical students and residents.


  • Two national and three regional planning meetings are held.


  • The AMA receives 53 grant applications, and 16 teams are awarded planning grants. Of these 16 teams, five were joint applications, resulting in a total of 27 medical schools represented by the awardees.