The LEARN Curriculum
In August, 2014, the class of 2018 was introduced to our revised curriculum, entitled the LEARN curriculum. The LEARN curriculum is the product of an initiative that began in the spring of 2011 with over one hundred faculty, student and administrators at Stony Brook University School of Medicine working in specific subcommittees. Among the goals in introducing a reformed curriculum was the interest in increasing active learning, establishing early professional identity, and developing physician competencies in an integrated and contextual approach. The guiding principles for LEARN included a focus on active student learning, on students having responsibility to learn with faculty serving as facilitators, interdisciplinary integration of curricular content and earlier introduction of the clinical clerkships.
LEARN is an acronym for Learning Centered, Experiential, Adaptive, Rigorous and Novel. The LEARN curriculum is divided into three phases:
1. An 18-month foundational phase
2. A one-year primary clinical phase
3. A 16-month advanced clinical phase
Several innovative features have been incorporated into the LEARN curriculum. These include transition courses at the beginning of each phase of the curriculum and Translational Pillars throughout the clinical phases of the curriculum.
Other components of the LEARN curriculum reflect recent and ongoing activities. The Scholarly Concentration Program is an optional activity in which many of our students participate. There are five distinct tracks which span the interests of our students and their faculty mentors. These tracks include:
1. Basic, Clinical or Translational Research
2. Global Health
3. Social Sciences
4. Medical Humanities and Ethics
5. Medical Education
Students spend at least six months involved in their area of scholarly activity culminating with a presentation of their work at Research Day in their fourth year.