September 17, 2020 | Perspectives
This summer I began my first clinical rotation of my third year in Family Medicine. Due to local COVID-19 precautions, the first half of our rotation was being conducted virtually. During that time, we were encouraged to complete the Aquifer Family Medicine cases. In my experience, the cases were a helpful bridge to patient care from my coursework…
September 10, 2020 | Perspectives
This year, COVID added additional challenges to the difficult transition from pre-clinical to clinical/clerkship years by limiting student and faculty interactions during the traditional orientation week. We used Aquifer to create an online Orientation Course for our LIC students that addressed multiple key concepts and facets of the transition to the clinical/clerkship years and allowed our team to focus our limited in-person time on crucial activities.
August 10, 2020 | Pearls
Our community faculty are busy clinicians in local health systems or private practice. At several points throughout the clerkship, we provide calendars with the didactic and Aquifer case schedule illustrating the clinical information students will cover on campus. We actively encourage preceptors to engage in discussion with their students about what was covered during these activities outside of their offices to the benefit of both students and preceptors.
June 24, 2020 | Perspectives
Students provide consistently high rankings for Aquifer as reported in our five-star rating feedback data, but how and when cases are integrated into the curriculum can have a significant impact on their learning. Find out what themes emerged when we ask students what methods are most effective–and discover practical tips for assigning Aquifer cases based on student feedback.
May 19, 2020 | Perspectives
When the COVID 19 pandemic interrupted our first-year medical students’ longitudinal primary care practicum (PCP), we needed to find an alternative that addressed one of its most important goals: helping students to focus the comprehensive history, exam, and documentation that they’re taught in the clinical skills course into a primary care-appropriate presentation and SOAP note. Our thoughts turned quickly to Aquifer, which is used by our internal medicine and pediatrics clerkships. Many Aquifer cases integrate well with the basic science topics our first-year courses, but most seemed a little too advanced for a mid-first year student. At the same time, senior students were eager to find ways to help, so we decided to combine Aquifer cases with ‘virtual’ peer teaching via videoconference.
May 12, 2020 | Perspectives
For those of us using virtual education time to prep students for eventual return to clinical settings, using an Aquifer case as a framework for an interactive orientation or hospital operations training session will better prepare students and interns to hit the ground running and take full advantage of rotations which, in many cases, have been shortened in duration.
May 11, 2020 | Pearls
Due to curriculum modifications related to the COVID-19 pandemic, our clerkship directors were charged with developing a virtual curriculum to keep students engaged in clinical learning activities while suspended from participation in face-to-face clinical care. Rather than develop a virtual curriculum for each individual clerkship…
May 11, 2020 | Perspectives
Aquifer cases can form the basis for a huge variety of classroom sessions that can be easily adapted for virtual learning. Here are some ideas to spark your creativity if you are designing your own activity. Suggested strategies include…
April 30, 2020 | Pearls
If you want to use Aquifer cases as a clinical correlate in basic sciences classes just assign one case per week (e.g. pediatric case about cystic fibrosis in a genetics course; internal medicine case about anemia in hematology course). Students at UW have told me that this is about the right number of cases because the case content is complicated for early students. Students can work independently through the case and you can use it as context for discussion about how the basic science helps explain the clinical presentation–getting to the “why” behind how patients present as they do!
April 23, 2020 | Perspectives
Many educators are wondering how to meaningfully engage their students in distance learning activities that create community and allow them to practice important patient care skills (while not seeing patients). While I have been doing peer-to-peer consults with educators around the country about using Aquifer cases in their curriculum, I stumbled into a helpful reframe that seems to be unlocking people’s creativity: Aquifer cases (yep…more than 170 of them!) are virtual standardized patients. Wait…what?