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Anthropology in medical education

written by Anna Harris
24/06/19

TORONTO, May 27th 2019 – During a three week visit to Canada (see my post on Montreal here), I spent two weeks as a visiting researcher at the illustrious Wilson Centre at the University of Toronto, home of some of the most inspiring and innovative research at the intersections of the social sciences/humanities and medical education research. During my stay I had rich, long conversations with the scientists, developed ideas for a new paper and built new collaborations for future work. I also gave a talk at the Toronto General Hospital, on ways in which anthropology may find new places in medical education (see below).

Toronto is another Canadian city with many amazing researchers and centres – I was fortunate to be able to meet up with the inspiring Denielle Elliott of the Centre for Imaginative Ethnography, my Maastricht colleague Conor Douglas, as well as attend a workshop as part of the outreach program of the Toronto International Film Festival on how to include films in public events.

 

Illustration by Anna Harris

Reconsidering a Place for Anthropology in Medical Education

In medical education, the term qualitative research is often discussed without discrimination. The social sciences are consolidated, yet the lineages and approaches of each discipline within the social sciences are quite diverse. In this talk I wish to focus on the contribution of one field in particular, anthropology, as a distinctive qualitative research approach. Ethnography, the methodology used by anthropologists, is not unfamiliar to medical education. Yet an anthropological perspective can add so much more to medical education than this method. In this talk I will discuss four areas of contribution in particular: 1) theory, through inductive fieldwork; 2) methodology, through apprenticeship techniques; 3) pedagogy, through training observation; and 4) writing, through attention to stories. Empirically, I will include examples from my research team’s project, funded by the European Research Council, Making Clinical Sense. This is a historical-anthropological project looking at the role of technologies in teaching sensory diagnostic skills in medical schools in Eastern and Western Europe and West Africa.

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Conference

The Body and the Built Environment

by John Nott
July 9, 2019
Event

Material thinking workshop

by Anna Harris
June 26, 2019
Event

Anthropology in medical education

by Anna Harris
June 24, 2019
Event

Making by writing

by Anna Harris
June 14, 2019
Event

Introduction to perfumery

by Rachel Allison
May 17, 2019
Inspiration

Practicing music skills

by Carla Greubel
May 16, 2019
Inspiration

Lost in translation, and in space

by John Nott
March 27, 2019
Event

Time for tinkering

by Anna Harris
February 21, 2019
Event

How smart is “smart” technology?

by Andrea Wojcik
January 11, 2019
Materials

Tools of the teaching trade

by Sally Wyatt
January 10, 2019
Materials

Christmas yarn

by Anna Harris
December 24, 2018
Multimedia

Cooking classes

by Anna Harris
November 26, 2018
Inspiration

Barefeet

by Anna Harris
October 21, 2018
Inspiration

Letterheads

by Anna Harris
September 26, 2018
Inspiration

Postcards

by Anna Harris
September 16, 2018
Materials

Wax museum

by Rachel Allison
August 6, 2018
Publication

Expressive instructions

by Anna Harris
July 31, 2018
Inspiration

Writing resources

by Rachel Allison
July 23, 2018
Event

Meaning and beauty

by Rachel Allison
July 20, 2018
Conference

Correspondence

by Anna Harris
July 16, 2018
Materials

The allure of the archives

by John Nott
June 28, 2018
Event

Methods workshop at UDS

by Andrea Wojcik
May 23, 2018
Event

Probes

by Anna Harris
May 16, 2018
Article

Tricks

by Anna Harris
April 27, 2018
Writing workshop

Beyond the elevator

by Anna Harris
April 6, 2018
Conference

Simulating touch

by Anna Harris
March 27, 2018
Conference

Dancing, moving, unsettling

by Anna Harris
March 9, 2018
Event

Skillshare Writing Workshop

by Rachel Allison
February 25, 2018
Conference

STS in/on Africa

by John Nott
February 19, 2018
Article

A month together

February 8, 2018
Event

Comparison as method

by Anna Harris
February 6, 2018
Publication

Working with bias

by Anna Harris
January 19, 2018
Inspiration

Holiday reading

by Anna Harris
January 3, 2018
Materials

Modelling movement in medical education

by Andrea Wojcik
December 13, 2017
Conference

Embroider meet surgeon

by Anna Harris
October 30, 2017
Event

Sensing with medical students

by Anna Harris
October 9, 2017
Materials

Pagers

by Anna Harris
September 13, 2017

We are hiring!

September 5, 2017
Event

TransPositions Summer School 2017

September 4, 2017
Conference

Ethnographic Experimentation #Colleex

by Rachel Allison
August 7, 2017
Event

Making an omelette

by Sally Wyatt
July 21, 2017
Materials

Tuning forks and electronics

by Sally Wyatt
May 12, 2017
Event

Drawing Instruments

by Rachel Allison
March 20, 2017
Article

Experimenting with collaborative sensory ethnography

by Andrea Wojcik
March 16, 2017
Conference

A sensory training workshop

by Anna Harris
August 29, 2016
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