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July 9, 1910

Practical Examinations for Medical License

Author Affiliations

New York. Director-elect of the Henry Phipps Psychiatric Clinic, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore.

JAMA. 1910;55(2):140. doi:10.1001/jama.1910.04330020044021

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To the Editor:—  Of all the methods of raising standards, efficiency of examination is no doubt by far the best plan. I doubt whether any other branch is more exposed to a reeling off of mere patter instead of the furnishing of evidence of training than that of psychopathology and psychiatry. The differences of teaching are so great and the vocabulary seems to play such an undue part that there is no fair way to size up the efficiency of a man outside of a demonstration of what he does with an actual case. This plan was in practice when I passed my state examination at Zurich, in Switzerland, in 1890; both in psychiatry and in medicolegal work we had to examine and report on a case, which is perfectly feasible and really the only way to get around the differences of teaching and the hollowness of answers to mere

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