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Improving the Basic Science Curriculum by Integrating the Clinical Sciences

Purpose: To evaluate medical student perceptions on whether curriculum innovations through the integration of clinical medicine with basic science improves learning in the pre-clinical curriculum.

Background: Medical schools are transitioning to competency-based curricula that emphasize an early introduction to clinical training. Students who learn basic science explanations for clinical correlates have improved retention. By integrating clinical sciences into the pre-clinical curriculum, learning is optimized for students.

Methods: At the end of the Reproduction pre-clinical sequence at the University of Michigan, students were asked to evaluate the overall quality of the course, whether objectives were met, and whether the course was well-organized, with a one-to-five level scale. These parameters were compared for the sequence between 2018 and 2019, after curricula changes were introduced.

Results: For the Reproduction sequence in 2019, course assessment parameters were improved in comparison to 2018 values. Overall, students rated the quality of the course as “very good/excellent” (4.21 ± 0.91), compared to “fair/good” (2.88 ± 1.01). Students “strongly agreed/agreed” that objectives for the course were met (4.44 ± 0.82) versus “agreed” (3.74 ± 0.88), and “agreed” that the course was well-organized (4.21 ± 1.07) compared to “disagreed” (2.66 ± 1.19).

Discussions: The restructuring of the Reproduction sequence allowed for purposeful integration of clinical medicine into the basic science pre-clinical curriculum, resulting in improved quality of learning for students. Recruiting clinical faculty for lectures, and implementing case-based instruction with the APGO videos for supplementation, provided an effective and efficient method of integrating clinical medicine content within the sequence.

Topics: CREOG & APGO Annual Meeting, 2020, Clerkship Director, Medical Knowledge, Practice-Based Learning & Improvement, UME, Lecture, Problem-Based Learning,

General Information

Clerkship Director,
Medical Knowledge,Practice-Based Learning & Improvement,
Lecture,Problem-Based Learning,
Clinical Focus

Author Information

Angela Liang, MD; Michigan Medicine; Maya Hammoud, MD, MBA; David Marzano, MD 

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