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Letters to the Editor  |   May 2020
Transitions in Undergraduate Medical Education
Author Notes
  • Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine at Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine; Former Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs and Associate Professor of Internal Medicine at Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine 
  • Assistant Dean of Clinical Affairs and Associate Professor of Family Medicine at Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine 
Article Information
Medical Education
Letters to the Editor   |   May 2020
Transitions in Undergraduate Medical Education
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, May 2020, Vol. 120, 292. doi:https://doi.org/10.7556/jaoa.2020.047
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, May 2020, Vol. 120, 292. doi:https://doi.org/10.7556/jaoa.2020.047
To the Editor: 
In the September 2019 edition of The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, a team of researchers from Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) provided a report on an innovative, 4-week transitional course (Introduction to Clinical Clerkship) that improved student comfort and preparedness for clerkship.3 We applaud the learner-centered approach of PCOM in helping students with this key transition in their medical training. 
There are 3 major transition points in undergraduate osteopathic medical education: (1) a shift from fragmented, undergraduate coursework to professional, cohort-based learning (first year), (2) leaving primarily classroom-based learning (second year), train in the clinical setting (third year), and (3) preparing to move from medical school to graduate medical education (GME) training (fourth year). The most successful students can effectively navigate these transition points4 and are subsequently the most ready for residency. 
In a similar manner to PCOM's efforts to improve student experience during transition point 2, the clinical faculty at Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine (MU-COM) implemented a month-long experience to prepare students for clerkships, Clinical Colloquium (C1), with an emphasis on transformative learning.2,5 
In spring 2019, to address transition point 3, MU-COM also introduced the GME Colloquium (C2). This new course is a month of activities designed to guide students into their fourth year and prepare them for entry into GME. The focus of C2 is to build residency application portfolios, provide a better understanding of the GME match process, and reinforce clinical skills and the osteopathic entrustable professional activities.1 
Many colleges of osteopathic medicine are envisioning the future of medical education and implementing innovative approaches to help ensure that our students become graduates that will thrive in today's dynamic world of health care delivery. Future research efforts should involve collaboration across colleges of osteopathic medicine with similar goals to help ensure the success of all osteopathic medical graduates. 
References
American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine. Osteopathic Considerations for Core Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs) for Entering Residency. American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine; 2016. http://www.aacom.org/docs/default-source/med-ed-presentations/core-epas.pdf?sfvrsn=20. Accessed September 16, 2019.
Atherley A, Dolmans D, Hu W, Hegazi I, Alexander S, Teunissen PW. Beyond the struggles: a scoping review on the transition to undergraduate clinical training. Med Educ. 2019;53(6):559-570. doi: 10.1111/medu.13883 [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Butts CA, Speer JJ, Brady JJ, et al. Introduction to clerkship: bridging the gap between preclinical and clinical medical education. J Am Osteopath Assoc. 2019;119(9):578. doi: 10.7556/jaoa.2019.101 [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Colbert-Getz JM, Baumann S, Shaffer K, et al. What's in a transition? an integrative perspective on transitions in medical education. Teach Learn Med. 2016;28(4):347-352. doi: 10.1080/10401334.2016.1217226 [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Surmon L, Bialocerkowski A, Hu W. Perceptions of preparedness for the first medical clerkship: a systematic review and synthesis. BMC Med Educ. 2016;16:89. doi: 10.1186/s12909-016-0615-3