Minutes 06.29.06

Minutes 06.29.06

University of Virginia School of Medicine
Curriculum Committee


Surgery Conference Room, 4:00 p.m.                       

Present (underlined) were: Reid Adams, Gretchen Arnold, Eve Bargmann,  Daniel Becker, Robert BloodgoodGene Corbett, John Gazewood, Jennifer Harvey, Donald Innes (Chair),  Howard Kutchai, Marcus Martin, Chris Peterson, Jerry Short, Bill WilsonDevin Mackay, Dave Ryan, Kavita  Sharma,  Debra Reed (secretary) Guest: Meg Keeley

  1. Neuroscience Course Director.  The Committee enthusiastically approved Dr. Kevin Lee's nomination of Mary Kate Worden for the position of Neuroscience Course Director after review of her teaching credentials.  

  2. Electives/Selectives. Meg Keeley outlined her progress in developing the electives/selectives.  The selectives began on Monday, 6/26/06.  Approximately half of the class of 2007 are taking  4 weeks of Internal Medicine electives including Acute Cardiology Inpatient; Pulmonary; Infectious Disease; Digestive Health Inpatient; CCU; MICU; Geriatrics and Palliative Care; Cardiovascular Emergencies; Acute General Medicine.  The MICU selective was recently changed from 4 to 2 weeks because of ACGME regulations regarding number of learners allowed on a service at one time.  Students are allowed time off from their Selectives for boards, interviews (one day per week) as they are in electives.  In the 2007 -2008 academic year the Selectives will all be two weeks.  

    John Jackson has revamped the evaluation of selectives/electives.  The student evaluations of the elective as well as the faculty evaluation of the student will soon be offered on line as it is for the clerkships through Oasis.    This evaluation system is being piloted through Radiology now and will be available to all the selectives/electives later this year. 

    One-two week OBGYN selectives in areas such as Urogynogology (received), Maternal Fetal Medicine/Reproductive Genetics; Infertility; High Risk OB; GYN/ONC are being sought.  Psychiatric Medicine has also been asked to provide proposals for selectives such as Child Psychiatry; Geriatrics; Women's Mental Health, Outpatient; Addictive Medicine.  For the present time, surgical subspeciality selectives will all be at UVA.  However, Clerkship Directors will ask Roanoke to propose selectives in some of the areas such as OB/GYN. 

    Dr. Daniel Herrington has recently reported problems providing enough living space for the students rotating in Roanoke.  Care must be taken not to add to this problem with the selectives/electives. 

    Meg Keeley has asked the Curriculum Committee for help in encouraging Departments to provide the selective proposals.  Students will receive their choices of Selectives by lottery in January.

  3. First Year Spring 2006-07 Schedule.  Since the first year spring schedule has not been finalized, the Committee recommends superimposing last year's schedule into this year and complete with minor modifications.  Students and faculty alike need this schedule as soon as possible.  Problems with the loss of time at the beginning of the Spring session, due to the Winter Holiday period, still must be worked out but start dates/exam dates/ etc. must be published immediately.

  4. Late grades in Clerkship and Courses.  Courses and clerkships are required to submit grades for students within 5 weeks of the end of the term.  PoM1 and 2 are experiencing difficulties obtaining the required student evaluations from some of the mentors.  Don Innes will contact these mentors and stress the importance of the 5 week deadline
  5. Healers Art.  Julie Connely has sent a follow-up on the Healer's Art course to the Committee.   The Healer's Art course in 2006 had 83 students (mostly first year) and 15 faculty participating.  The overall evaluations were positive with students recommending that we offer the course again in 2007.  There were many insightful comments from students and faculty regarding personal and professional development.  

    There was a downside to the session in 2006 that related to the number of students who signed up.  At the time of registration, only nine faculty had been recruited. They decided to recruit more teachers rather than turn students away. Looking back that may not have been the best decision for several reasons. First, the Mulholland Lounge turned out to be too small and too uncomfortable for about 100 individuals.  The large group sessions were more difficult for students as they found it was hard to feel safe and trusting.  With the diversity of students, some were more committed than others to the course.  Faculty also struggled just to regain the feeling of unity, team spirit, etc. Still overall, the student advisors and the evaluations suggest the course remains very worthwhile in supporting the UVA curriculum and addressing areas of medical practice not otherwise discussed so fully. 

    For 2007, we are planning the following; Ann Kellams and Julie Connely will share the director role. They have been working together on the many details that need to be organized and addressed.  They will limit the number of students to about 54 and plan on nine faculty.  The other faculty will be used as reserves in case of emergency and a rotational process for teaching will be implemented. They will offer the course in the winter-spring on 2007 and it will focus primarily on first year students, although any students may register. If necessary a first come/first serve selection process will be used.  There are a number of other specific issues that we will be attending to in order to make the experience as valuable as possible. Devin McKay noted that he had taken the course and found it very helpful and worthwhile.

  6. Lecture attendance.    The Committee discussed the attendance issue in years one and two.  Student comments collected by Sixtene Valdelivre and self-reporting lecture attendance data from the surveys being used for the Pass-Fail grading study were provided to the Committee.   It appears that the Spring of the second year has the greatest problem with low attendance.  Bob Bloodgood presented suggestions from students for improvements to improve lectures, and in turn, improve attendance:

    Lectures must have value added (beyond the lecture handout)
    Don't just read the Powerpoint
    Limit the number of Powerpoint slides per lecture
    Emphasize images and diagrams instead of lists and tables in Powerpoint presentation
    Follow the order of the handout
    Don't use the Powerpoint as the lecture handout
    Limit the number of lecturers and only use the best  educators
    Reduce number of lectures and add more small group teaching
    Reduce number of afternoon activities
    More study days before exams
    More case-based teaching 

    The Committee discussed reasons for this such as the increased afternoon student time commitment during this period, the cumulative finals in both Pharmacology and Pathology and the USMLE Step 1 examinations.  It is hoped that some of the changes for 06-07, such as the reduction in number of Psychiatric Medicine afternoon sessions and the removal of one of the labs from POM2 will increase lecture attendance.

Donald Innes