MED690N.01 (Reno)
Individual Study/Research in Medical Education

Office of Medical Education

  • Course Name: Individual Study/Research in Medical Education
  • Short Name: MED690N.01 Indp Study Medical Ed
  • Course Number: MED690N.01
  • Location: Reno
  • Type: Non-Clinical
  • Length: 2 - 4 Weeks
  • Preceptor: Jennifer Bennett, Ph.D., MPH - For students participating in Scholarly Concentration in Medical Education

Please contact the department to verify elective availability.


  • Participate in or develop a scholarly project that will result in the acquisition of knowledge and skills in medical education.

Description of Rotation

Students develop their own study and research program with the assistance of a faculty member in the Office of Medical Education. Students can elect to do a variety of projects relevant to the educational process and outcomes of medical education. The student will develop a written proposal and approval prior to starting the elective. This will constitute a learning contract and will be a primary determinant of the student's evaluation. Projects may be quite diverse, including, but not limited to a scholarly paper, observational study, survey research, or a comparative study of learning outcomes. Students may participate in on-going medical education research or evaluation projects sponsored by the Office of Medical Education.

Students need to complete and submit a project proposal to their project advisor/mentor and the Office of Medical Education for review, approval and record.

Proposal Requirements: Students need to include the following components in their proposals and submit the proposals to their project advisor/mentor and the Office of Medical Education for review, approval and record.

  1. Title. The proposal should include a title indicating the subject of the study.
  2. Abstract. The proposal should include a brief (approximately 250 words) summary of the project.
  3. Background. The proposal should include a concise summary of the background literature that provides the context and rationale for the proposed work.
  4. Project Definition. The project itself, the rationale, and the goal(s) must be clearly defined. If the proposal is for scientific research, the guiding hypothesis must be clearly stated. If the proposal is for a community service or education project, the scope of the project should be clearly defined.
  5. What are the goals of the project? The project must address a specific issue or question. The definition of specific goals at the outset will facilitate the development of an appropriate strategy for completing the project.
  6. What is innovative about the project? The project should attempt something new. A project could be considered new by asking a novel question, proposing an innovative method for answering an old question, or developing and/or testing a new tool for medical instruction or patient care.
  7. How is the project relevant to a career in medicine? The only restriction on the subject matter is that it must have relevance to medicine, health care delivery, or other area of medical inquiry. With a little creativity, the possibilities are limitless.
  8. What is the student's role in and time commitment to the project? If the student formulated the question and an approach to its solution, this should be stated in the proposal. If the student is joining a project already in progress, the student's role should be clearly defined: activities that will be performed by the student and the level of effort on the part of the student should be clearly specified. The time frame and commitment to the project should be specified. To fulfill the goals of the course, students, at a minimum, should be expected to expend considerable effort over a three to six month period.
  9. Methods. The methods by which the project and the goals will be accomplished should be clearly described. The proposal should demonstrate that adequate thought and consultation have been given to designing the study.
  10. Evaluation. Clearly state how the project will be evaluated. How will the project termination point be identified? How will the success of the project be judged? How were the defined goals (see #5 above) accomplished?



Evaluation Method

Evaluation will be dependent on the learning contract and final product developed by the student during the elective.


  • Honors: An exceptional performance which exceeds all course objectives
  • High Pass: A performance which exceeds most course objectives
  • Pass: A performance which meets the course objectives
  • Fail: A performance which does not meet the course objectives

Special Notes

Can be applied towards Scholarly Concentration in Medical Education.

Before requesting this course:

1. Confirm with the preceptor that they will precept you on your planned work

2. After they have approved, include the preceptor's name in the notes on the Add/Change Form.