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Article
April 19, 1919

DESIRABILITY OF CHANGING THE TYPE OF WRITTEN EXAMINATIONS

Author Affiliations

NEW HAVEN, CONN.

JAMA. 1919;72(16):1131-1133. doi:10.1001/jama.1919.02610160015005
Abstract

The purpose of medical education is not to produce walking encyclopedias of medical knowledge. While the acquisition of the rudiments of medical knowledge is a part of medical education and a somewhat important part, it is nevertheless true that the sum of medical knowledge is so vast that even were it desirable to attempt to teach it, it is not possible for any single human intellect to digest and retain it. Much more important in medical education than the acquisition of mere knowledge is the development of certain specific qualities and habits of thought, the summation of which may be described as the scientific habit of mind.

There is doubtless room for some difference of opinion as to the relative importance of the different mental qualities and attainments that are most desirable in a student of medicine. It is probable, however, that there is tolerably substantial agreement among medical educators

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