Medical Student Core Curriculum in Dermatology Survey

Patrick E McCleskey, Robert T Gilson, Richard L DeVillez
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 2009, 61 (1): 30-35.e4

BACKGROUND: Few published articles focus on undergraduate dermatology education.

OBJECTIVE: To quantify the amount and type of dermatology instruction for medical students and to rank specific diseases by the expectations of learners.

METHODS: Electronic surveys were sent via e-mail to 109 dermatology residency programs as well as to 33 medical schools without dermatology programs.

RESULTS: Responses were received from 64% of dermatology residency programs. Half of the responding institutions require 10 or fewer hours of dermatology instruction, and 8% require no dermatology instruction. Seventy-five percent or more of the responding dermatologists expected medical students to learn to diagnose or treat 33 skin diseases after completing a clinical dermatology rotation.

LIMITATIONS: Surveys were sent only to academic institutions.

CONCLUSIONS: Dermatology educators expect medical students to learn to diagnose or treat common skin diseases, but little time is designated for this in most medical schools. The aggregate opinions of dermatology educators may be used to prioritize future curricula.

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