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What to Teach

  • Curriculum Development for Medical Education: A Six Step Approach
    Kern DE, Thomas PA, Hughes MT, eds. Curriculum development for medical education: A six-step approach. 2nd ed. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press; 2009.

This widely-used and referenced book offers a concise 6 step model of curriculum design for medical educators. Following this model will help you efficiently develop relevant and effective courses and learning sessions, and help you avoid many of the common traps of novice teachers and educators.

To quote Yogi Berra, “If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll end up someplace else.”
It’s tempting to put together learning sessions by starting with a “topic” – but especially in medicine, a “topic” can encompass a vast array of knowledge, skills and attitudes that learners can rarely digest in an hour, a day or sometimes even an entire course. Well-written learning objectives make us judiciously think about what students need to learn, how much they can realistically learn at a given time, and how we are going to assess that learning. If you haven’t written learning objectives before, it’s helpful to get some background on the process and to get feedback on your objectives from others.