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A Case-Based Active Learning Session for Medical Genetics Resources.

  • Anderson, Hana1
  • Studer, Amy C2
  • Holm, Katharine N3
  • Suzuki, Ayaka4
  • 1 Associate Professor, Department of Internal Medicine and Department of Cell Biology and Human Anatomy, University of California Davis School of Medicine.
  • 2 Health Science Librarian, Blaisdell Medical Library, University of California Davis School of Medicine.
  • 3 Research Associate, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, University of California Davis.
  • 4 Licensed and Certified Genetics Counselor, Division of Genomic Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, University of California Davis.
Published Article
MedEdPORTAL : the journal of teaching and learning resources
Publication Date
Apr 01, 2021
DOI: 10.15766/mep_2374-8265.11135
PMID: 33816796


As the clinical applications of medical genetics and genomics continue to expand, nongenetics professionals increasingly find themselves in the position of managing patients with genetic conditions. To prepare medical students to handle this future practice demand, it is imperative that they obtain skills and confidence in utilizing credible medical genetics resources to care for patients with genetic conditions. To this end, we developed active learning materials to introduce first-year medical students to these resources. This approximately 2-hour session targeted first-year medical students (123 students) and combined flipped classroom and small-group collaborative case-based learning models. Students first completed a hands-on preclass exercise, which guided them in navigating the Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man website, and then attended an in-person small-group classroom activity, which provided the opportunity to apply information obtained from credible medical genetics resources to a patient case. At the conclusion of the classroom activity, students voluntarily completed an anonymous survey. Results of student postsession surveys showed that, regardless of previous exposure to medical genetics resources, this session increased both confidence in skills and future intention to use medical genetics resources. Since the majority of students were unfamiliar with using specialized medical genetics resources prior to this educational intervention, the session functioned as a practical introduction to these essential resources. We propose that equipping medical students with skills that support inquiry-oriented learning, particularly in the early stage of training, can cultivate the practice of lifelong learning in medical genetics. © 2021 Anderson et al.

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