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Electives - Humanities and Ethics in Medicine

Images of Medicine

Elective Number: (Oasis E18i) 3508

Course Supervisor: Dr. Marcia Childress

Coordinator: Dr. Marcia Day Childress, (434) 924-5974, woolf@virginia.edu

Duration: 2 weeks

Available: Rotation 12a

Report to: TBA

Time to Report: 9:00 am

Place to Report: Center for Biomedical Ethics and Humanities Office, Barringer 5

Attendance: Attendance at elective activities is mandatory.

  • Anyone who is ill or has a personal or family emergency must contact Student Affairs and the Attending on Service.
  • Students are allowed to take off up to 1 day per week to interview between November 1 and February 1.
    • Specific days missed must be approved by the Attending on Service.

Number of students per rotation: Minimum of 4, Maximum of 12

Course Description: This course explores how images of medicine—in visual art, film, literature and popular culture—represent and reflect cultural assumptions, attitudes, meanings and values. Attention is given to attending to (seeing and listening), "reading," and interpreting a wide range of images that represent physicians, other caregivers, patients, illness experiences, the able and disabled body, caregiving, suffering, and death.

Learning objectives: Students will be able to:

• Refine and practice clinically useful skills in visual and aural attention through observation/analysis of visual and other imagery
• Refine and practice close-reading skills through study of literary and other texts
• Exercise and refine interpretative and perspective-taking skills and tolerance for ambiguity and uncertainty through responding to images/texts and to peers' interpretations of images/texts
• Design, prepare and present to the class an individual project involving a visual image
• Reflect on their own professional formation and education

The course meets in eight seminars of at least two hours each and provides generous time for small-group discussion and activities. One course component is "Clinician's Eye," the visual observation workshop at UVA's Fralin Museum of Art. There is generous emphasis throughout the course not only on the study and interpretation of images created by others in various media but also on participants making their own images, including photographs, drawings, and maps. At the end of the course, participants prepare and present individual projects. Participants also attend Medical Center Hour.

This description is a general overview. The supervisor will establish the schedule and particular requirements at the time the student's project proposal is approved.