Medical Education Conducts Skills Exercises for Third-Year Students

The University of Miami Hospital and Clinics welcomed 198 third-year Miller School of Medicine students from both the Miami and regional medical campuses for the 21st annual Objective Structured Clinical Examinations — a medical school rite of passage that tests the clinical skills of students. More than 100 faculty members from the Departments of Anesthesiology, Medicine, Surgery, Psychiatry, Pediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Family Medicine served as faculty evaluators in the annual assessment.

During the two days of exercises, held June 4-5, 11 stations were set up, each with objectives to measure specific competencies. At most stations, students encountered people portraying patients and were required to obtain an appropriate history from them, perform an appropriate physical exam or display proficiency in communication skills. Stations also assessed students’ clinical reasoning and decision-making skills. 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 communication skills, physical examination, data interpretation and clinical decision making, all core in the movement toward more competency-based education and assessing students in entrustable professional activities,” said Alex J. Mechaber, M.D., professor of medicine, the Bernard J. Fogel Chair in Medical Education, and Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Medical Education.

“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., associate professor of medicine, Director of the Clinical Skills Program, and Associate Dean for Clinical Curriculum.

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