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Millennium Curriculum Project Update - January 8, 1998

1. Approximately 30 content subcommittee proposals, to be referred to as "themes," were received by the December 31, 1997 deadline. A few more proposals have come in. Proposals were reviewed and grouped into general categories.

2. Plan for formulation of the new year one curriculum: Dr. Malemud, Core Academic Program Coordinator, will oversee a horizontal oversight subcommittee under the Core Content working group for year one which will include all "major players" in our currrent year one, including representatives of both clinical and elective programs and representatives from the MCP submitted vertical themes (content proposals).
   Delineation of two categories is necessary:

  1. Prior knowledge required upon entrance to medical school - that body of material that will not be taught.
  2. The first required horizontal block of the new curriculum that comprises the foundation, or fundamentals, level. Once this is determined, it must then be decided how each content theme hooks in vertically to the horizontal block.

Dr. LaManna was optimistic that we will have a good idea of:

  1. the fundamentals
  2. the teaching faculty involved, and
  3. the vertical themes that will hook into the horizontal blocks.

Representation of the following groups on the year one curriculum committee is vital:

  1. Current medical students
  2. Emeritus faculty
  3. M.D./Ph.D. students

Our goal is to have an outline of the first year curriculum including both the clinical and community orientation ready for the February 27, 1998 medical education retreat.

3. Brief discussion of some of the "gaps" existing in the new curriculum in its beginning stages.

4. After the curriculum is designed, the Evaluation working group will focus on how to test it. Tentative ideas include:

  1. Pre-tests given to students entering with advanced scientific backgrounds could allow these individuals to test out of fundamental requirements and go directly into advanced study.
  2. Interim examinations could be given to students so that the individual could measure where he/she is along the way. Issues for consideration include possibilities that the individual student could take the interim at his/her own rate and be able to take it again.

Valid plans to evaluate and compare the new curriculum to the old one cannot be formulated, as there exists no control group. The variables are so great when trying to make such a comparison. The consensus was opposed to using the USMLE Step 1 scores as a measure of the new curriculum's success. We are currently at the 99% pass rate for first-time test takers. A reduction in the number of students repeating year one or in the number of students having to take the USMLE Step 1 several times would be welcome. Assessing how well we compete with the thirteen-member consortium and other Ohio schools in attracting students, and also how many acceptances we have to offer, once we institute our new curriculum would be significant outcome measures. It was emphasized that the whole concept of the new curriculum is not about examination scores. We are focusing on an environment that is more integrated, intellectual, and satisfaction-inducing. The Millennium Curriculum Project is about attitudes and behavior, the driving forces behind our revision. We can test quality assurance and quality control as we develop and deliver our curriculum. However, measuring how students use what they have learned after they graduate is much more difficult to assess. Each faculty member has his/her own unique view of what the physician five years out of medical school should be like.

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This page was last updated on 1/29/98 by Daphne Cook.

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