Principles of Medical Biology

The present work in 25 modules is a successor to The Biological Basis of Medicine published by Academic Press in 1968. Its primary purpose is to fuse the basic ...medical disciplines with the pathophysiology and clinical medicine in a holistic manner, and hence lay securely the outlines of an integrated core curriculum. Although no attempt is made to cover the entire gamut of medicine, the range is large and not overcondensed. Considerable material deemed profitless or of little consequence to the practising physician is omitted. Our concern, however, is not merely with trimming pure and applied knowledge to a reasonable compass but also with its treatment and integration at three levels, namely, molecular, cellular, and organ system, while keeping reductionism to a minimum. This is an approach, which could, of course, be used to great advantage in both tutorial and lecture sessions.Very early in our career we developed an interest in the problem of teaching medicine to entering students and came to the conclusion that the education model which stresses understanding (rather than parroting) and learning for oneself is not a curiosum. We also came to the conclusion that reform in medical education demands, by and large, a scheme of action that takes into account two key concepts. One is that a shift in responsibility from the teacher as the expert to the student as active learner is necessary. Another is that an integrated core curriculum calls for a knowledge base that would eliminate the dangerous misconception that only experts are able to competently teach the manifold disciplines that constitute modern medicine. Thus, the availability of these modules ought to greatly simplify the task of the student, as well as that of the tutor or lecturer. This now brings us to the question: How should progress be monitored? In a nutshell, the tutor assigns topics, and the student, in turn, assimilates and masters the subject matter, then initiates and conducts a discourse in a small-group setting, and finally, writes an essay. This procedure is followed at least once weekly. Thus, continuous assessment by the tutor of student initiative and performance is made possible.There can be no quarrel with this education model. In fact, its many virtues have been expounded in the Harvard report thus: "New Pathway students preferred a self-directed learning environment, tended to memorise less and conceptualise for their own educational success, were likely to choose more patient-centered specialties, were more satisfied, stimulated and challenged than their classmates" (the control group). To prevent misunderstanding, we would like to say at once that this model of education can be adapted to tutorial groups of 15 to 20 students. Further, there is a good deal to be said for the adoption of a mixed system of lectures and tutorials in the early stages of reform and transition from a large to small group is a meaningful change in outlook and spirit is the first desideratum. Without change in spirit reform will avail us little. View full descriptionHide full description

Latest volumes

15. The Liver in Biology and Disease
Edited by Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 600 Pages
Published: December 2004
ISBN 13: 978-0-7623-1124-8

14. Biological Psychiatry
Edited by Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 641 Pages
Published: December 1999
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-819-1

8. Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology
By Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 1111 Pages
Published: November 1997
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-813-9

7. Membranes and Cell Signaling
Edited by Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 637 Pages
Published: May 1997
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-812-2

Other volumes

6. Immunobiology
Edited by E.E. Bittar, N. Bittar
Hardbound, 350 pages
Published: December 1996
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-811-5

5. Molecular and Cellular Genetics
Edited By E.E. Bittar, N. Bittar
Hardbound
Published: September 1996
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-809-2

4D. Cell Chemistry and Physiology: Part IV
Edited by Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 512 Pages
Published: June 1996
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-808-5

4C. Cell Chemistry and Physiology: Part III
Edited By E.E. Bittar, N. Bittar
Hardbound
Published: June 1996
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-807-8

4B. Cell Chemistry and Physiology: Part II
Edited by Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 416 Pages
Published: May 1996
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-806-1

4. Cell Chemistry and Physiology: Part I
Edited by Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 400 Pages
Published: January 1996
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-805-4

Cellular Organelles and the Extracellular Matrix
Edited by Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 292 Pages
Published: January 1996
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-804-7

Cellular Organelles
Edited by Edward Bittar
Hardbound, 287 Pages
Published: December 1995
ISBN 13: 978-1-55938-803-0