Case Studies: Taking them outside the box

Case Studies: Taking them outside the box

Academic Year:
2021 - 2022 (June 1, 2021 through May 31, 2022)
Funding Requested:
Project Dates:
Overview of the Project:
Offering students in the Spanish for the professions (medical) class case studies that are simulations, enriches the students’ ability to look at the patient experience, take their medical history and even select a diagnosis, among other training. From the instructor’s perspective, I can add issues of justice, equity and access to each of the cases, but from perspectives of different Spanish speaking countries so that the students are producing results in Spanish as well. With these cases, students will be able to follow different patients, reflect on their own perspectives and thoughts, while also addressing cultural tendencies. This program would be offered in addition to the partner exchanges that students currently with a university in Colombia.
Final Report Fields
Project Objectives:

The primary objective of this project was to see if students thought that the iHuman Patients Kaplan case studies were worth purchasing for future classes.  Since the cases are in English, I also wanted to know how much supplementary work would be needed to incorporate Spanish activities and DEI and social justice content.  


Project Achievements:

The students summarized the project's achievements well (comments translated):  

  • I think this was not only an opportunity to practice Spanish in a clinical situation, but it was a good way to familiarize                                                                       ourselves with the steps a doctor takes during an interaction with a patient. 
  • I learned a lot of things I didn't know before such as taking blood pressure, auscultation, vital signs, etc.  It's a good way to offer students a real experience with patients. 
  • I learned a lot of specialized, different vocabulary, I enjoyed practicing physical exam [questions], and learning more about the different illnesses.

In addition to learning how to take a patient's medical history and write a SOAP (subjective, objective, assessment and plan), with Kaplan's permission, I added context related to be able to talk in class about social justice, gender identity and alternative medicine.  We were also able to practice an interpretation with one of the cases, as well.


While the cases were interesting and the pilot successful, in the end, the students and I felt that requiring students the future classes to purchase these cases was not appropriate because 1) they are all in English and 2) the cases were too advanced.

Given that this project was specific to the class, -Spanish for the medical professions, the activities can't be disseminated.
Advice to your Colleagues:
When I originally considered using the iHuman Patients program in class, I did consider how advanced the program was. However, I am grateful for the opportunity to pilot the program because the students' perspective provided me the opportunity to discuss with the students the advantages and disadvantages prior to making a decision. The students came up with excellent ideas and suggestions for improving the use of cases within the class context. Adding innovative material to our classes is exciting and more work sometimes , but I find that working with the students prior to making major changes to the course actually saved me time.