Clinical Skills of Third-Year Medical Students are Tested at Annual Exercises

The University of Miami Hospital and Clinics welcomed 196 third-year Miller School students from both the Miami and Regional Medical Campuses for the 23rd annual Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs), a medical school rite of passage that tests the clinical skills of students. More than 100 faculty and residents from the Departments of Medicine, Surgery, Psychiatry, Pediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Family Medicine served as evaluators for the assessment.

During the June 9 and 10 exercises, 11 stations were set up, each with objectives to measure specific competencies. At most stations, students encountered people portraying patients (“standardized patients”) and were required to obtain an appropriate history from them, perform an appropriate physical exam or display proficiency in communication skills, including through a telephone encounter. Stations also assessed students’ clinical reasoning and decision-making skills.

This year also continued to feature the use of online checklists by evaluators facilitating data entry. The exercises are modeled after the United States Medical Licensing Exam Step 2 Clinical Skills Examination, a required component of medical licensure in the U.S.

“This exercise continues to be an important benchmark in assessing the competence of our students in the movement toward a more competency-based education and assessing students in entrustable professional activities,” said Alex J. Mechaber, M.D., the Bernard J. Fogel Chair in Medical Education, senior associate dean for undergraduate medical education and professor of medicine.

“During this time of competing pressures, coordinating these exercises is a huge undertaking and truly a collaborative effort between the medical education faculty and staff and the highly dedicated educators in our clinical departments,” said Paul E. Mendez, M.D., director of the Clinical Skills Program, associate dean for clinical curriculum and associate professor of medicine.

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