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Small Group Activities

Clinical Problems (CP) Sessions

The CP sessions are a case-based, ‘active-learning’ component of the course. These sessions have several purposes: (a) to reinforce key concepts; (b) to foster facility in the application of basic science concepts to clinical problems; (c) to develop greater facility in problem solving, calculating, and applying quantitative reasoning; (d) to introduce additional topics selected for their clinical relevance; and (e) to promote cooperative, active learning in an informal small-group setting.

• All CP sessions will be workshops comprised of about 25 students. During the session, students will divide into smaller cooperative groups to discuss the material and learn the concepts. Following the discussions, brief summary presentations will be made to the entire group.
• Attendance is required at small-group CP sessions.
• Material covered in the CP sessions will be examined in the unit exam in which it falls.


The Conferences are another active-learning component of MFM. They have several purposes: (a) to reinforce key concepts, with an emphasis on integrating biochemistry, molecular biology, and genetics; (b) to develop facility in searching and critical reading of the biomedical literature; (c) to develop facility in oral presentation using PowerPoint slides; and (d) to promote cooperative, active learning in an informal small-group setting.

• The class will be divided into Conference groups of about ten students each. Each group will meet with the same instructor on five occasions: an introductory organizational session and four working sessions.
• Each student will be given an assignment and asked to prepare one 15-minute presentation on an assigned paper. After each presentation, there will be a brief discussion. All students are expected to contribute to the discussions.
• Attendance is required at all Conference sessions. Conference activities (presentation and participation) will account for 5% of the total course grade.
• Material covered in conferences will be included in the unit exam in which it falls.





Content maintained by: Constance Stein
All contents copyright 2003, SUNY Upstate Medical University
Last Modified: March, 13, 2009