New Medicine curriculum postponed

New Medicine curriculum postponed

No space for 'learning plazas' in the building on the Universiteitssingel 50


MAASTRICHT. The new curriculum for the bachelor’s of Medicine will start a year later than planned. Due to COVID-19, this will only be in September 2022. At first, only in the (much smaller) English track, from 2024 also in the Dutch bachelor’s. There will be no ‘learning plazas’ either. There is not enough space in the building on the Universiteitssingel 50 for these large squares where students and experts could meet.

The project leaders gave an update to the Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences’ faculty council last Tuesday. In 2019, it was decided that a major curriculum review was needed, in which not only the content but also the teaching concept was to be adapted. No traditional tutorial groups anymore, no lectures, and a new way of testing.

The future students will become the directors of their own course of study. At the beginning of a block, they will receive an ‘Authentic Professional Task’ with a situational sketch. They have ten weeks to come to grips with the knowledge and skills required to complete this task. How they do that, is up to them. They must keep track of their progress in a portfolio, which will be assessed at the end of the year. Then the decision will be taken whether the student may continue on to the next year of the study programme.

Part of the plan is setting up learning plazas. These are spaces where students can come together. To study, discuss matters with each other, follow a training, or talk to an expert (lecturer or clinician). They had hoped to create space when Universiteitssingel 50 was being renovated, but that has been unsuccessful. “You need one entire floor of the building for this purpose,” said Mirjam Oude Egbrink, member responsible for education, during the meeting. “That is not feasible considering our growth scenario – student numbers, but also research.”

The students from the English track, however, will initially be given a learning plaza. Spaces are being reserved on the fourth floor of UNS50, which will be permanently at their disposal. “That is also complex and requires a lot of negotiation, but it seems like it is going to happen,” said Sylvia Heeneman, bachelor’s co-ordinator of the International Track Medicine, to the council. “This will allow us to test our education concept in the way in which was meant. We can learn from that. Where does the added value lie and how can we arrange it in such a way that we can also achieve the added value without the learning plazas.”

Author: Cleo Freriks

Photo: Loraine Bodewes

Tags: FHML,medicine,curriculum,IMT,PBL,education

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