Based on the recommendations made in a number of influential reports on the future of medical health in Canada, the UBC Faculty of Medicine initiated the Dean’s Task Force on Curriculum Renewal to review our curriculum. The renewed curriculum embraces all of these recommendations, in addition to addressing previous accreditation feedback.
The curriculum has been designed to increase flexibility of learning for students; embed opportunities for inter-professional education; and move towards a competency-based, spiraled, integrated educational approach. The end goal of Curriculum Renewal is to produce graduates who will meet both the current and future health care needs of British Columbians.
The launch of Year 1 of the renewed curriculum started in August in Vancouver and begins in early January at the Southern Medical Program. The Class of 2019 will be the first cohort to experience the renewed curriculum at every stage of their studies.
Teachers in particular, whether a tutor, session instructor or preceptor, play a key role in the transformation of the MD Undergraduate Program.
- For tutors … you will move from problem-based learning to case-based learning, and have increased opportunity to provide formative feedback and assessment for student learning.
- For session instructors… you will have more clarity around how your lecture fits within the overall curriculum.
- For family practice preceptors and clinical skills tutors … you will have increased opportunity to provide formative feedback and assessment for student learning.
Although much of the content will remain the same, it will be structured and delivered in different ways. The renewed curriculum in Year 1 is made up of fewer, more integrated courses that developmentally spiral content. The spiral-based curriculum means that concepts will be periodically revisited, reinforced, and built upon so that students can absorb information in a more meaningful way. From an assessment perspective, the renewed curriculum will be assessed in a coordinated way with a defined set of assessment methods. Each method is well suited to assessing certain types of competencies and brings unique and important information about performance. We have also embedded processes for continuous quality improvement to enable our curriculum to continuously improve year after year.
Flexible and Enhanced Learning (FLEX)
FLEX is a new, innovative series of three courses in the renewed curriculum. It offers students unique opportunities to pursue a variety of scholarly activities within a defined learning space. FLEX enables students to explore individual learning interests in greater depth. The FLEX course is designed to foster innovation, creativity, and critical thought.
Workplace Based Assessment (WBA)
WBA involves the direct observation of students performing relevant physician tasks in both clinical and non-clinical settings. WBA tracks students’ progress in integrating clinical knowledge and skills as a basis for safe and effective clinical judgments and decision-making. It also assesses how students deal with patients and the ability to work productively in a team of health care professionals.
Portfolio has both developmental and assessment activities where, students build foundational reflective learning skills in Years 1 & 2 and then apply these skills in their clinical environments during Years 3 & 4. Students are then assessed on their reflective activities, in a variety of topics, such as professionalism and communication.
Progress Tests are comprised of multiple choice questions that sample the complete knowledge domain expected of an MD graduate. These exams occur repeatedly through the four years of the program and provide formative feedback about performance across subjects to guide learning.
For Years 2 to 4, more information and updates will be provided in the months ahead. For questions specific to Year 1 teaching, please contact Allison Gilbert, Years 1 & 2 Program Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org. For information about the Renewed Curriculum process, please visit http://www.cr.med.ubc.ca/.