SOM Faculty: 4th Year Medical Student Integration Selective

The goal of this new selective is to emphasize basic science in the senior year of medical school.

Dear Colleagues,

Some of you may have heard of some evolving changes to the 4th year School of Medicine curriculum that will be fully implemented starting in July 2009, but many have not be aware.  I write to you to tell you of one of those changes.  This is the so-called Integration Selective.

The goal of this selective is to emphasize basic science in the senior year of medical school.  It is recognized that we do an excellent job of incorporating clinical medicine into the first two years of medical school, but some we don’t do as good of a job of carrying some of the basic science into the clinical years.  We hope to provide an experience that addresses this issue.  For the purposes of this course, I use the term “basic science” broadly, as we hope to incorporate many disciplines in this endeavor, including epidemiology, public health and ethics, among others and not focus just on traditional definitions of basic science.

This is a 4 week selective.  The primary activity of this selective will be clinical rotations as we hope to have the students do something clinically in which they have an interest, as it is my opinion they will get the most out of the experience.  We will have 1 day per week that will be devoted to activities of the integration selective.  These will include ~ 45 minute seminars (one or two) that day in which faculty will deliver a variety of presentations that incorporate clinical problems with a basic science underpinning taking advantage of the small group learning format. We will also be asking the students to complete a personal project on a topic of their clinical interest within the elective with a basic science foundation.  

The purpose of this email is two-fold.  First, I would hope to offer electives in all specialties to give the students a broad range of options.  Most of the specialties are represented with 4th year electives, but I would ask that you assure there are ample opportunities for students to rotate on your service.  One thing to point out is that we are not going to allow AI’s to be used for the selective next year, for several reasons, and I would ask that you assure there are other elective opportunities for students other than these.

Second, I would ask for your help in participating in the integration seminars that we will have for the students. I want to have all disciplines represented and I really do need to your help.   I would ask that you consider being part of this activity in addition ot having students on your clinical electives.  I am very sensitive to asking for your help with regard to the amount of time involved.  I would hope to have a number of these seminars and ask any one person to participate no more than 3-4 times per year.  Of course I would welcome anyone who would be interested in being more frequently involved, but that would be an individual decision.

Please take a moment to contact me about the above two issues.  I appreciate in advance your interest and your help in improving the content of education for our 4th year students.


Mike Meyers
Assistant Professor of Surgery
Course Director, Integration Selective

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