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June 1996

Pediatric Resident Training in a School Environment: A Prescription for Learning

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Pediatrics, Stanford (Calif) University School of Medicine (Drs Zenni, Sectish, and Prober); and La Entrada School, Menlo Park, Calif (Mr Martin).

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150(6):632-637. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1996.02170310066012

Objective:  To describe our experience with developing, implementing, and evaluating the educational effect of a school health experience for pediatric residents.

Design:  Descriptive.

Setting:  University-based pediatric residency program and five public elementary and middle schools in surrounding communities.

Participants:  Eleven pediatric residents.

Intervention:  A school health experience for pediatric residents was developed in response to the report of the American Academy of Pediatrics Task Force on Pediatric Education and the new training recommendations of the Residency Review Committee of the American Council for Graduate Medical Education. Residents spent 3 weeks in the schools engaged in teaching and observational activities.

Main Outcome Measures:  Questionnaires of residents' attitudes and knowledge, structured resident interviews, and teacher questionnaires.

Results:  Positive effect on resident's knowledge of school structure, child development, communication with children, school-related problems, and special education. Positive effects on resident's attitudes about teamwork between teachers and pediatricians and roles of pediatricians in schools. Teacher feedback showed acceptance by the school community.

Conclusions:  Pediatric residents benefit from exposure to children in school settings. Schools provide an opportunity to observe normal childhood development and behavior in a more natural setting than that provided in the hospital.(Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150:632-637)