ADVANTAGES

Responding to the same concerns about premedical science education, the Association of American Medical Colleges and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute have undertaken a joint, comprehensive assessment of the continuum of premedical and medical science education. Themes likely to be included in their recommendations are the importance of introducing synergy and efficiency through cross-disciplinary and biologically relevant teaching; of educating “inquisitive” physicians, who understand not only medical knowledge but also how it is acquired; and of establishing a habit of scientific thought on which to build the practice of medicine. The recommendations are likely to favor scientific competencies over specific discrete courses, implying that premedical requirements for rigid, 1-to-2-year, discipline-specific science courses should give way to more creative and innovative courses that span and unite disciplines, offering a glimpse of the way biologists and physicians actually navigate real-life problems.

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