gms | German Medical Science

16. Grazer Konferenz – Qualität der Lehre: Curriculum planning and assessment

19. - 21. April 2012, Timisoara, Romania

Paediatric clinical training and assessment of 6th year students in the medical curriculum Innsbruck


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  • corresponding author Jörg-Ingolf Stein - Medical University of Innsbruck, Department of Pediatrics III, Cardiology, Pulmology, Allergology, Cystic Fibrosis, Innsbruck, Austria

16. Grazer Konferenz – Qualität der Lehre 2012 - Curriculum planning and assessment. Timisoara, Romania, 19.-21.04.2012. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2012. Doc12grako07

doi: 10.3205/12grako07, urn:nbn:de:0183-12grako073

Veröffentlicht: 5. September 2012

© 2012 Stein.
Dieser Artikel ist ein Open Access-Artikel und steht unter den Creative Commons Lizenzbedingungen ( Er darf vervielfältigt, verbreitet und öffentlich zugänglich gemacht werden, vorausgesetzt dass Autor und Quelle genannt werden.


One of the major concerns in medical curricula is teaching and assessing practical skills. Many curricula changes focussed on clinical aspects and shifted available teaching hours from theoretical to practical courses. These “hands on“ courses are only possible in a setting with sufficient patient availability and small groups of students. Although some technical skills can also be taught in a skills lab first, they still have to be then used in real life.

In the Innsbruck medical curriculum the last, 6th year is dedicated to the clinical and practical training of students. They have to do 6 modules, 3 of which are mandatory - family medicine, surgery, internal medicine lasting 8 weeks – and others they can chose for 4 weeks the department from a list – including Paediatrics- of main interest and importance according to the definition of the curriculum committee.

Students are assigned to one ward within a 1:1 setting, one mentor and one student and should be integrated into the daily work, getting their own patient’s responsibility from admission to discharge. Under supervision they take the history, do necessary examinations discuss diagnosis and therapy including prescriptions.

They have a logbook with all necessary information about the module and a weekly schedule where it is the student’s responsibility to fill in their duties and tasks as discussed and decided together with the mentor.

The assessment consists of structured elements like Mini-CEX = Mini-Clinical-Exercises and DOPS = Direct Observation of Procedural Skills.

Both have defined general criteria like clinical decision making, organisation and efficiency professionality and specific ones like technical skills or counselling being graded with a scoring from 1(lowest) - 10points. At least once a week one of these has to be don and documented, with the chance for comments and suggestion to improve the performance.

After a term of 4 weeks a final colloquium, again structured, is mandatory and at the final score given. The highest score for one assessment could be 50 points, thus after 4 weeks 200 would be the upmost scoring. Minimum of 120 is required to pass. In addition verbal assessment is given too.

One advantage of more integrated and practically oriented teaching with real patients lies in the combination of skills and attitudes! Which is another major focus of current modern curricula and can be achieved easily by this supervised practical training.

The Workshop will first give an overview of the current structure and state of the clinical training and then discuss its feasibility and advantages/disadvantages for Paediatrics, maybe leading to changes and improvement.