Teaching effective physical examination is a key component in the education of medical students. Preclinical medical students often have insufficient clinical knowledge to apply to physical examination recall, which may hinder their learning when taught through certain understanding-based models. This pilot project aimed to develop a method to teach physical examination to preclinical medical students using “core clinical cases”, overcoming the need for “rote” learning.
This project was developed utilizing three cycles of planning, action, and reflection. Thematic analysis of feedback was used to improve this model, and ensure it met student expectations.
A model core clinical case developed in this project is described, with gout as the basis for a “foot and ankle” examination. Key limitations and difficulties encountered on implementation of this pilot are discussed for future users, including the difficulty encountered in “content overload”.