Empowering medical students as agents of curricular change: a value-added approach to student engagement in medical education

Abbas Hyderi
Alexandria N. Young
Eric Wallbruch
Joseph R. Geraghty
Julie Mann
Laura E. Hirshfield
Tiffani D.M. Berkel
Yoon Soo Park
Soort article
Show and Tell
Medical students,
Student engagement,
Value-added medical education,
Verscheen in

One area in which medical students can add significant value is medical education, and involving them as key stakeholders in their education can have a profound impact on students and the institutions that serve them. However, detailed descriptions of the structure, implementation and quality of programs facilitating student engagement are lacking. We describe the structure of a novel student engagement program at the University of Illinois College of Medicine-Chicago (UICOM-Chicago) known as the Student Curricular Board (SCB). We surveyed 563 medical students across all levels of training at our institution in order to examine the impact of this program, including its strengths and potential areas of improvement. The SCB serves as a highly structured and collaborative student group that has far-reaching involvement from course-level program evaluation to longitudinal curriculum design. Medical students overwhelmingly valued opportunities to be involved in their curriculum. Students with the greatest exposure to the SCB were more aware of specific program initiatives and expressed increased interest in academic medicine as a career. By highlighting this innovative student engagement program, we aim to share best practices for a highly structured, value-added approach to medical student engagement in medical education that is applicable to other medical schools and student leaders.


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