Science & Tech

New online approach builds community around medical cases

1 min read

Internet tools boost student-faculty interaction

A new suite of Internet tools is boosting student-faculty interaction in an engrossing twist on traditional case-based teaching at Harvard Medical School. Called ICON, for “interactive case-based online network,” the cases are run by a faculty-student-IT specialist trio at Harvard Medical School, backed by extensive cross-faculty collaboration. ICON is revamping neuroscience case-based learning by engrossing both students and faculty in the plight of virtual patients struggling with real-world diseases. Assistant Professor of Neuroscience at the Medical School James Quattrochi, the program’s director and ICON’s developer and driving force, said ICON’s online case-based learning modules allow a greater level of student and faculty participation than possible in traditional, paper-based case learning. ICON was designed and developed by the Harvard Interfaculty Neuroscience Program, a year-old program that includes faculty from the Medical School, the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, the Business School, the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Massachusetts Mental Health Center. ICON was developed with support from the Harvard Provost’s Funds for Interfaculty Collaboration and Innovations in Instructional Technology.