Wednesday, June 20, 2012
News for Academic Physicians
Presentations, elections highlight AMA-SMS meeting
Now in its 36th year, the AMA Section on Medical Schools (SMS) hosted its annual meeting featuring educational presentations and elections.
The meeting, which took place June 15–17 in Chicago as part of the Annual Meeting of the AMA House of Delegates, featured an education session on understanding the culture and learning environment in academic health centers from the perspective of medical students, residents and practicing physicians. The session examined ways to ensure that a "hidden curriculum" does not subvert a medical school's formal curriculum, mission and values, or lead to a decline in medical student professionalism, empathy and ethics.
Data from the AMA-convened Innovative Strategies for Transforming the Education of Physicians research collaborative was shared with attendees, and the AMA-SMS held a session of mini-presentations on curricular innovations in medical education. Of particular note was a presentation on model programs to monitor the learning environment to ensure that standards of professional behavior are always maintained.
The following physicians were elected to the 2012–2013 AMA-SMS Governing Council:
- Maria Savoia, MD, dean for medical education, University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, chair
- John Fogarty, MD, dean, Florida State University College of Medicine, chair-elect
- Arthur Ross, III, MD, dean, West Virginia University School of Medicine, immediate past chair
- Betty Drees, MD, dean, University of Missouri–Kansas City School of Medicine, section liaison to the AMA Council on Medical Education
- Donald Eckhoff, MD, professor of orthopedic surgery, University of Colorado School of Medicine, delegate
- Cynda Ann Johnson, MD, president and founding dean, Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute, at-large member
- Alma Littles, MD, senior associate dean for medical education and academic affairs, Florida State University College of Medicine, at-large member
- Kenneth Simons, MD, associate dean for graduate medical education and accreditation, Medical College of Wisconsin, alternate delegate
- Surendra Varma, MD, associate dean for graduate medical education and resident affairs, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine, at-large member
"Stickiness" and stories in medical education
Clinical scenarios are stories that "captivate learners and underscore the relevance of knowledge they've recently acquired or that's about to be conveyed," write the authors of recent commentary in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Lessons are "sticky," or more comprehensible and memorable, when they capture our curiosity, engage our emotions and transform students from passive recipients to active learners. In short, the prototypical "bowlful of sugar" makes the medicine go down—and in this case, the sugar is the story.
Some experts, however, believe that the practice of assessing and valuing educational methods based only on their capacity to influence practice directly reflects an impoverished understanding of how change in clinical practice actually occurs. The authors of "Didactic CME and practice change: Don't throw that baby out quite yet" in Advanced in Health Science Education argue for a balanced approach when implementing new educational strategies.
Is it time to move beyond lectures to more active learning techniques? Visit the AMA's New Horizons in Medical Education online community and vote in a poll on this topic. Only AMA members can log in to the online community; if you're not a member, join today.