Minutes 09/14/99

Minutes 09/14/99

University of Virginia School of Medicine

Principles of Medicine Committee

Minutes 09.14.99

Jordan 3-31. Cell Biology Conference Room 2:30 P.M..

Present were: Robert Bloodgood, Marcia Childress, Bruce Cohen, Al Connors, Carl Creutz, Claudette Dalton, Andy Darby, Barry Hinton, Wendy Golden, William Hobbs, Peter Holloway, Allison Innes, Donald Innes (Chair), Robert Kadner, Howard Kutchai, Kevin Lee, Andrew Lockman, Jennifer McClune, Jonathan Moreno, Richard Pearson, Christine Peterson, Marjorie Rein, Jerry Short, Tony Tamburello, Mariecken Verspoor, June Wade (for Eugene Corbett), David Waters, Robb Williams, Brian Wispelwey


  1. Changes in the organization of the School of Medicine were outlined. The LCME strongly recommended changes in the management of the medical school curriculum. The Council on Medical Education has since been dissolved and Don Innes named Associate Dean for Curriculum. A Curriculum Committee (CC) has been formed and has begun to look at the governance structure for the curriculum and how the curriculum can be managed. The Preclinical Committee will be renamed the Principles of Medicine Committee (PMC). The Clerkship Committee will be renamed the Clinical Medicine Committee (CMC). The basic sciences, although emphasized in the first two years of medical school should have a presence in the third and fourth years. Clinical Medicine likewise should have a place in the first and second years of medical school as well as third and fourth years. For this reason, representatives from each committee will sit on both committees.

    Once the Curriculum Committee defines the overall management issues, the PMC and the CMC will be taking a much more active role in curriculum development. It is expected that the Curriculum Committee will provide an outline of the general structure and format of the curriculum and CC expectations to the PMC and the CMC. The PMC and the CMC will then be charged with development and implementation of these modifications. A model might be a) Curriculum Committee provides PMC or CMC with guidlines; b) PMC or CMC develop a proposal; c) proposal is returned to the Curriculum Committee, critiqued and d) proposal is returned to the PMC or CMC for implementation.

    The Director of the Generalist Scholars Program (Susan Squillace), the MD/PhD Program (Gary Owens), and the Hospital Information System (Steve Borowitz) have or will meet with the Curriculum Committee.

    The members of the Curriculum Committee are: Reid Adams, Anita Clayton, Alfred Connors, Eugene Corbett, Steve Meixel, Robert Bloodgood, Jerry Short, Bill Wilson, Robb Williams, and Donald Innes. A WEB site is under construction for the Curriculum Committee. This WEB site will enhance communication with faculty and students and will be interactive, allowing faculty and students to correspond with the Committee.

  2. As a continuation of the "experiments in course development" in which we learn from each other's experiences, Peter Holloway presented the changes made to the Biochemistry curriculum this year. Four weeks were partitioned from the general biochemistry curriculum and devoted to a "Disease of the Week". The class was divided into five groups for two sessions each with a general wrap up session for the entire class on Friday. Due to the lack of clinical faculty, this small group teaching exercise is limited to one week per month. Steve Meixel assisted Dr. Holloway in creating the segments. At this point, one session (sickle cell) has been completed (9/3-9/10/99). Dr. Holloway was the facilitator for the sickle cell session. Subsequent sessions on alcoholism, diabetes, and colon cancer are planned for the Fall. The sessions resulted in a net "loss" of 24 lecture hours. The lecture time was reduced by combining the content of two lectures into one, decreasing the content of each lecture, and deleting some Clinical Correlations. Occasionally supplemental reading material will be distributed. To help focus the discussions, a list of questions was distributed to the students at the beginning of the week which they were expected to be prepared to answer. Students were expected to be prepared to volunteer, or be called upon, to produce some information during the discussions. At the session, students were encouraged to use overhead transparencies or the blackboard to enhance discussion. Each group was expected to produce two or three new references on the subject, the most appropriate will be incorporated into the course next year with the finder cited. Overall, it went very well. Over 50% of the students actively participated in each of the sessions and seemed to enjoy the experience. The "wrap-up" session was somewhat less successful. In the future, the wrap up session should maybe be more formal, that is, more specific material prepared by the professor. One student brought a friend who has sickle cell disease to the "wrap-up" session. Biochemistry may also try having a beginning lecture but no wrap up session. Questions based on these sessions will be included on the exam. The groups of 28 students seemed to be an appropriate number.

    The committee was curious regarding the reduction in lecture time and it's correlation with a reduction in what the students are expected to know. Dr. Holloway noted that while the lecture time was reduced 25-30%, actual information the student was expected to know was down about 15-20%.

    The committee expressed interest in having someone speak at a subsequent meeting on how to run small group discussions and how to impart this information to the other small group leaders in our areas.

  3. New Teaching Award - The medical students, concerned that there are so few awards for excellence in teaching for teachers, have created a new set of teaching award. Students are handling both the selection process and the presentation of the awards.

  4. A fourth year Student Teaching elective (2-4 weeks) has also been developed. Students are selected for the program by their classmates. The selected students then contact a course director or other teaching faculty member to arrange their elective. Elective activities might include tutoring, critique of course exams and handouts, WEB site development or participation in laboratories. Please be receptive to this program if a student approaches you. If you are not approached by a student and are interested in participating in this program, contact Robb Williams at <krw4c@virginia.edu>.

  5. The second year class has also organized a mentoring program for the first year class. Each first year student is paired with a second year student mentor.

  6. Topics suggested for future meetings include:
    • Review progress of Curriculum Committee
    • Dr. Hinton to recap changes to the Anatomy curriculum
    • Dr. Short reviewing the comments in the 1999 Looking Back
    • 1999 series Step 1 results
    • Karen Grandage to review the MD Consult Program


The next meeting will be 10/14/99 at 3:00 P.M.. in the Cell Biology Library (Jordan 3-31).


Minutes submitted by: Donald J. Innes, Jr., M.D. Date: 9/20/99