January 5, 2010
Happy 2010! At the halfway point in the school year, it’s a good time for this month’s PEP Talk to look closely at some of the College of Medicine’s overall program and individual module objectives.
As part of our accreditation process, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) requires that faculty members with responsibility for medical student education fully understand the objectives of the program. Program objectives are global, measurable statements that identify the desired skills, behaviors and attitudes to be achieved by students at the time of graduation.
The College of Medicine program objectives encompass medical knowledge, patient care, systems-based practice, practice-based learning and improvement, ethics and professionalism, and interpersonal and communication skills. You will find a detailed list of program objectives at http://www.med.ucf.edu/academics/md/objectives.asp.
Each module or clerkship has its own specific objectives in relation to the overarching program objectives. How do we as faculty members ensure that we’re meeting the program objectives? Let’s look at two examples:
Medical Knowledge Program Objective: Demonstrate knowledge of the various causes (genetic, developmental, metabolic, toxic, microbiologic, autoimmune, neoplastic, degenerative, and traumatic) of maladies and the ways in which they operate on the body (pathogenesis).
Activities that support this objective
* The Human Body 1 (HB-1) module (Molecules to Cells) introduces the biomolecular structure of cellular components and describes their role in genetics and cellular metabolism. Throughout the module, we describe the clinical correlates which highlight the basic sciences including diabetes, inborn errors in metabolism and gout.
* The program objective is further realized in the Human Body 3 (HB-3) module (Health and Disease) introducing and discussing infectious disease and autoimmune disorders with a focus on microbiology, pharmacology, clinical implications and pathology.
* The organ-system based module, S-1 (Hematology and Oncology) introduces neoplastic disorders and incorporates the diagnosis and treatment of disease processes in oncology and hematology, including pathology, pharmacology, laboratory medicine and clinical medicine.
Communication Skills Program Objective: Demonstrate the ability to convey presence, build rapport, and employ active listening to communicate compassionately, effectively, and in culturally and emotionally appropriate ways, both verbally and in writing, with patients, their families, colleagues and others with whom physicians must exchange information in carrying out their responsibilities.
Activities that support this objective
* The Practice of Medicine module (P-1) prepares students for the clinical aspects of medicine including patient interaction, ethical and medico-socioeconomic issues, and skills necessary for effective communication. These skills are enhanced in the Community of Practice component when students interact with patients in a community preceptor’s office.
* In the Psychosocial Issues in Healthcare module (C-1), students are introduced to a range of issues that affect how they diagnose, treat and interact with patients and their families.
* Finally, there are a number of Longitudinal Curricular Themes (LCTs) that support this objective including Ethics and Medical Humanities, Gender-Based Medicine, Medical Spanish and Cultural Medicine.
Setting Goals, Getting Results
By setting standards, directing student efforts toward the module or clerkship objectives, and assessing the student’s performance we are not only meeting LCME accreditation requirements but we are training tomorrow’s best physicians.
I am most appreciative of all of the efforts that our volunteer and regular faculty members have put into developing the program and module/clerkship objectives. I realize that this process has required a tremendous amount of time on everyone’s part, but it is important for the foundation of our program. Thank you again. As medicine evolves and other competencies are identified, we will work together to keep our curriculum current and relevant to the practice of medicine. I hope 2010 is a happy and safe one for all.
Dick “PEP” Peppler, Ph.D.