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April 2013 Newsletter

MedU continues to create opportunities to further our mission, which is to advance medical education through collaborative development, maintenance and research of innovative and comprehensive computer-assisted instruction programs. Please read below for a review of our exciting work from the end of 2012 to April 2013.

Table of Contents

Cognitively Improved Cases

Self Assessment


     Opportunity for Student publication
     CLIPP Integration Small Grants
     APPD/COMSEP workshops


     Core Users Guide
     AUR workshops
fmCASES News
     Final Exam Research Project and Preceptor Needs Assessment Project
     STFM workshops
     "Shorter 'N' SIMPLEr"
     Question Release and Self Assessment
     Updated Modules
     ASE workshops
Other MedU News
     MedU Subscription Renewal
     MedU Reports enhancements
     MedU Listserv
     MedU Working Groups
     iInTIME Educational Scholarship Fund
     MedU Annual Survey

Cognitively Improved Cases
In response to student and faculty feedback, we have been making improvements to our cases. Since the beginning of the year, a few cases in each course were selectively modified.

  • We are piloting two cases in each of the following courses (SIMPLE, CLIPP, and fmCASES).
  • Changes do not alter curricular content.
  • Student log data is not affected.
  • Modifications are based on proved multimedia learning theory.
  • Student feedback has been solicited via survey at the end of each case.  To date, we have received approximately 2000 student responses. We are analyzing student feedback to ensure the appropriateness of our direction.

Self Assessment
We are piloting self-assessment approaches in CLIPP, CORE and SIMPLE courses.

  • Student feedback is being solicited and analyzed. To date, we have received approximately 500 student responses from our pilots.
  • Current student feedback shows a desire for self-assessment. We will continue to review student feedback throughout the project's progression.
  • Based on data collected, we anticipate implementing self-assessment approaches in the 2013-2014 academic year.


  • Opportunity for Student publication: CLIPP developed questions to help link basic science teaching to CLIPP cases in small group discussion sessions, and put a call out for student authors to write “answer keys” for these questions. The call began in December 2012 and will conclude in spring 2013.
  • CLIPP Integration Small Grants: Letters of Intent were received in February and invitations for Full Proposals were sent in March. Selected projects will be announced in May.
  • APPD/COMSEP workshops:  CLIPP staff will host a workshop on the Key Features Exam on April 10 from 1-5pm at the APPD/COMSEP annual conference in Nashville, TN.


fmCASES News

  • Final Exam Research Project and Preceptor Needs Assessment Project: Final Exam Research-The aim of this project is to understand the correlation of student performance on the fmCASES national examination with curriculum features and student use of cases. Preceptor Needs Assessment Project- The aim of this project is to understand the needs of community-based preceptors. Collaborators for these projects presented findings at the STFM annual conference in San Antonio, TX in January 2013. They are currently finalizing manuscripts and will present updates at the spring STFM annual conference in Baltimore, MD.
  • STFM workshops: fmCASES staff will be hosting two workshops at the STFM annual spring conference in Baltimore, MD. On May 3 at 3pm, "How Does Curriculum Integration of fmCSES Affect Performance on a Nationally Validated Exam." On May 4, at 11:15am, "Virtual Patient Cases to Teaching Tools: Evolution of fmCASES to Support Preceptor and Resident Training."
  • Congratulations to Dr. Howard Sussman of Stony Brook University School of Medicine, whose poster detailing the correlation between the fmCASES and NBME exams won one of the six blue ribbons awarded at the STFM annual conference in San Antonio, Texas in January 2013.


  • Shorter 'N' SIMPLEr”: We will be conducting research studies to determine alternative ways of presenting information and its impact on learning. Resulting from Geoff Norman's research on development of expertise (from multiple learned examples) and student feedback supporting that work, "Shorter 'N' SIMPLEr" is a continuation of the "Short ‘N’ SIMPLE" project that evaluates the effectiveness of original full-length cases versus modified cases.  The short cases will be based on the same chief complaint, but will illustrate different illness scripts for alternate diagnoses for the presenting complaint. Select institutions will be participating in this research.


  • Question Release & Self Assessment: Self-assessment questions for 10 modules have already been released. Questions for four more modules will be released by June.
  • Updated Modules: Content for six of the earliest modules have been updated. WISE-MD is re-filming sections and providing new animations to these modules, with an intended release date of summer 2013.
  • ASE workshops: The WISE-MD staff will be hosting two workshops on April 24 at the ASE Surgical Education Week conference in Orlando, FL. At 1:30pm, a session on integration of WISE-MD will include discussions by 3 clerkship directors, 1 clerkship coordinator and 1 student on their use of WISE-MD in the surgery clerkship.  At 3:30pm, a workshop on assessment and e-learning tools will review the validation status of WISE-MD assessment questions and also present some new e-learning technologies.

Other MedU News

  • Springtime MedU Subscription Renewal. Most subscriptions renew July 1.  MedU will be sending a detailed e-mail reminder by April 12.
  • MedU Reports enhancements: MedU created an accessible link on the home page, video tutorials and a users guide.
  • MedU Listserv:  Live since February, the MedU list provides a cross-disciplinary forum for posing challenging problems, sharing ideas and collaborating. Membership is limited to Clerkship and Course Directors at institutions that subscribe to MedU courses.
  • MedU Working Groups were created to advance our initiatives in the following areas:  Educators area (creating tools and resources for educators to be posted by the end of this academic year) and Videos (providing tools and training for educators and students).
  • MedU Educational Scholarship Fund: Letters of Intent for the 2013-14 Academic Year Grant were received in December 2012 and invitations for Full Proposals were sent in January. Awards will be announced in May. 
  • MedU Annual Survey: Thank you to those who participated. The survey is now closed. We are reviewing responses. Data will be posted by end of this academic year.