DERU-4017 - Skin Diseases in Novels and Films

DERU-4017 - Skin Diseases in Novels and Films

Elective Title: Skin Diseases in Novels and Films
Course Number: DERU-4017
Elective Type: career Duration/Weeks: 4 Max Enrollment: 1
Prerequisites: Successful completion of Year 2
Additional Requirements: N/A
Responsible Faculty Director: Richard Wagner, MD Periods Offered: 1-13 including holiday period 8 
Coordinator: Reynol Lopez Other Faculty:
Location to Report on First Day:
4.130 McCullough Bldg. (Dermatology Conference Room. Teleconferencing available for all scheduled class meetings.

1. Learn about the impact of skin diseases and skin conditions on people with them, other people and society as depicted by writers and film directors.
2. Learn to describe the morphology of skin diseases and understand the epidemiology, pathophysiology, diagnosis and treatment of the representative skin diseases and conditions studied in this class.

1. Understand how media depictions of skin diseases in literature and in film may differ from the perceptions of these diseases by physicians.
2. Improve visual skills in describing the morphology of skin diseases.

Description of course activities
This course is offered both as an elective (DERU 4017) and as a Selective (DERU 4402). It is not possible to switch from DERU 4017 into DERU 4402 or from DERU 4402 to DERU 4017 once the Period has started. Students are not permitted to receive academic credit for both of these courses. In addition, students taking either DERU 4017 or DERU 4402 for credit may not receive credit in electives DERU 4007, DERU 4011, or in Selective DERU 4051 due to the overlapping nature of these classes.

This elective is an intensive reading and writing class. Each week a novel and its derivative film will be assigned for discussion each Thursday afternoon of the elective. Students must maintain a log of all of their course related activities including time spent reading the assignments, time spent viewing the required films, time spent independently researching the skin diseases discussed, and the time spent on writing assignments. Elective students will meet concurrently with MS4 UTMB Selective students studying the same materials in DERU-4402. In addition to the reading/viewing assignments, each student is expected to research the skin disease studied that week in preparation for the seminar discussion. The following materials will be studied:

Week 1: Introductory lecture "Skin Disease Depictions in Novels and in Film"

Dear John (Thomas Lee, 2007, 176 pages) and film of the same title (2010)

-Melanoma background reading

Week 2: Cold Mountain (Charles Frazier, 1997, 449 pages) and film of the same title (2003)

-Albinism background reading

Week 3: The First Wives Club (Olivia Goldsmith, 1992, 557 pages) and film of the same title (1996)

-Aging skin background reading

Week 4: The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje,1992, 302 pages) and film by the same title (1996 Academy Award for Best Picture)

-Burn background reading

Type of students who would benefit from the course
Skin diseases are very frequent in primary care patient presentations, and so students interested in family medicine, pediatrics, internal medicine and emergency medicine will benefit from exposure to the materials studied in this elective. In addition, students interested in the specialties of dermatology and plastic surgery will find the topics covered in this class helpful in understanding the impact and perception of skin diseases.

Weekly Schedule
  Clinical Activities (estimated schedule)  
Day of Week   AM   PM
Monday N/A N/A
Tuesday N/A N/A
Wednesday N/A N/A
Thursday N/A N/A
Friday N/A N/A
Saturday N/A N/A
Sunday N/A N/A

 Average number of patients seen per week: N/A
 Call Schedule: N/A

Research Activities (estimated schedule)
Activity Hours per Week
Faculty Contact-Time 2 hour scheduled class Monday, noon to 2 pm
Self-Directed Study The student is expected to commit 40 hours weekly

Method of Student Evaluation
1.  Clinical Observation
  A. Where are students observed on this elective?
    Inpatient Service   Ambulatory   Surgery   Standardized patients
Patients simulators   Other
  B. Frequency - How often are students observed clinically?
    This is not a clinical elective. Students are observed weekly at their class.
  C. Format - What method(s) are used to document the student's clinical performance?
    Daily oral feedback   End of period oral feedback   Written feedback

2.  Oral Presentation
  A. Audience - To whom does the student present?
    Course Director and students in the class
  B. Frequency / Duration of Presentation(s)?
    Weekly in 2 hour class (time shared with faculty facilitator and other students in the seminar), Mondays noon to 2 pm
  C. Format - What guidelines are set for the student's presentation?
    The course director provides an outline for students to present their ideas about the assigned weekly novel and its derivative film. Students will also present information about what they learned about the disease studied that week in a small group format to the other seminar students with a faculty facilitator who is also a dermatologist.
  D. Assessment - Who assesses the student's presentation performance?
    Self-assessment   Peer assessment   Faculty assessment
  E. Method of content selection
    Current cases  Student-selected topic   Assigned topic

3.  Written Assignment (H&P's, notes, papers, abstracts, etc.)
  A. Frequency of written assignment(s)?
    For the first three weeks, students are required to meet and discuss comparisons about differences in the depictions of skin disease in the assigned novel and the derivative film. Students unable to attend scheduled class meetings must electronically submit a 1-2 page comparison to Dr. Wagner ( about skin disease depictions in the assigned novel and movie before the class is scheduled to meet. In the last week of the elective, students must submit a 5-10 page comparative essay about similarities and differences of the novel and film skin disease depictions on the last assignment (The English Patient text and film). It is due electronically by 5 pm on the last Thursday of the elective. Instructions about how to write a comparative essay will be provided to students during the weekly seminar by the course director.
  B. Format - What guidelines are set for the student's written work?
    -all work must be the student's own or appropriately cited -missed class discussions for the first three weeks are 1-2 pages in length and must be electronically submitted to Dr. Wagner prior to class. The final assignment is 5-10 pages in length and must be submitted by 5 pm on the last Thursday of the period.
  C. Length of written assignment(s)?
    Abstract   Annotated bibliography   1 - 2 page paper   3+ page paper
  D. Are recent references required?   No    If yes, how are they selected?
    Since the students are writing about their reading and film viewing assignments during the week, references are automatically incorporated into all the writing assignments.
  E. Method of content selection - e.g. student-selected, relate to cases, etc.?
    All writing assignment topics are made by the course director and reinforce the materials studied that week.
  F. Audience - Who assesses the student's written performance?
    Peer Assessment     Faculty Assessment     Other

4.  Examination
    Oral   Written multiple choice   Written essay / short answer   OSCE

5.  Extra Course Activities
  What expectations do you have for the student to demonstrate participation in the elective (e.g. small group activities, seminars, thoughtful questions, providing resources, journal club, resident lecture attendance)?
    Students are expected to attend and contribute to each weekly class discussion, and submit their written assignments on time. All scheduled class meetings are available through teleconferencing. Written makeup assignments are required for any missed classes.

6.  Additional Costs
  Please list any additional costs and/or purchases (books, materials, movies to watch, etc.) that are required for this course. Include an estimated total cost. If there are no additional costs, please enter "None".

7.  Other Modes of Evaluation
  Please explain below.
    Not applicable

8.  If this course is an Acting Internship, please complete the following:
  A. Objectives for the AI should relate directly to the Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs). Each AI should describe how the four key Year-4 EPAs that our school has identified as being Year-4 skills are assessed. The Year-4 objectives are:
1. Entering and discussing orders/prescriptions.
2. Give or receive patient handover to transition care responsibility.
3. Recognizing a patient requiring urgent or emergent care and initiating management.
4. Obtaining informed consent for tests and procedures.
Specify how the student will be given formative feedback on their clinical skills.

Year-4 students should demonstrate mastery of EPAs they developed in the clerkship year, including recommending and interpreting common diagnostic and screening tests, and performing general procedures of a physician. They should be able to demonstrate masterfully and independently skills they mastered in Years 2-3, including efficiently performing comprehensive admission-notes and succinct daily progress notes and perform accurate, concise, and hypothesis-driven clinical presentations, form clinical questions and retrieve evidence to advance patient care. They should be able to demonstrate basic understanding of and beginning mastery of collaborate as a member of the interprofessional team and identify system failures and contribute to a culture of safety improvement.

List advanced clinical skills that a student will be assured an opportunity to practice.

How specifically will this AI build on developing skills from the clerkship year to prepare students for internship?

What opportunities will typically be available to all students who take this AI (procedures, required presentations, etc.)? What opportunities may be available based on patient load/presentation or student initiative (ie. Writing a case report)?

An AI should have expectation of a minimum of 32 hours per week of clinical responsibilities. Duty hours should be capped at ACGME limits for an intern, thus up to 24 hours followed by 4 hours of activities related to patient safety, education, and handoff. Students cannot work more than 80 hours per week averaged over 4 weeks. They can only have 1 day off in a 7-day work week with 8 hours off between shifts.

Clinical responsibilities will vary depending on specialty, but how is the student functioning with work commensurate to a PGY1 with an appropriate level of training?

How is the student demonstrating drawing clinical conclusions and/or developing a management plan and documentation as an intern would do?

How and by whom will midpoint feedback be provided to the student? How will you remediate deficiencies identified at midpoint?

Acting Internship students often seek letters of recommendation following their experience. How many different Faculty will work directly with the student and have knowledge of the student's abilities to detail in a written evaluation? Describe the degree of supervision and interaction with faculty vs. residents or other providers and how feedback will be obtained if more direct work is with residents or other providers.