The Ken & Ruth Davee Department of Neurology faculty members are very involved in teaching and mentoring medical students. In the second-year course, Scientific Basis of Medicine, faculty members lecture on such topics as neuro-anatomy, epilepsy, movement disorders, traumatic brain injury, stroke, sleep disorders, headache, dementia, microbiology of central nervous system diseases, and the neuropathology of tumors and vascular diseases as well as other topics during the neurology section of the course. During the end of the second year, the clerkship director teaches the students neurological exam skills in a workshop consisting of stations with both standardized and real patients. Senior residents and students act as volunteer teachers. In addition the neurology faculty is very involved in mentoring medical students at all levels of training through SIGN (student interest group in neurology). This is the second biggest SIGN group in the nation.
The Neurology Clerkship is a required third year core rotation. It is headed by the clerkship director and the Neurology faculty members. This clerkship experience consists of a four-week rotation in one of two sites: Northwestern Memorial Hospital or Evanston Northwestern Healthcare (which includes Evanston and Glenbrook Hospitals).
Students rotate between a variety of settings including inpatient ward and stroke, consultation, outpatient clinics and the emergency department, where they have the chance to evaluate both acute and chronic neurological problems. An introductory class on the neurological examination is given at the beginning of the rotation by the clerkship director. There is also a special class to take by Dr. Ryan Hayes, a senior resident, on introduction to Neuroradiology. In addition, there are case-based lectures headed by the neurology faculty throughout the rotation on various neurological topics. Students are expected to attain competency in clinical activities such as performing a neurological evaluation and to gain a basic knowledge of neurological diseases and conditions. Grades are determined using a combination of written evaluations from the faculty preceptors, a written case report and a written final examination.
Fourth-year students have the opportunity for additional experiences in neurology. Students interested in a career in Neurology are required to do a one-month clinical rotation during their senior year. This can be a sub-internship on the consultation or stroke service, an outpatient rotation or a combination of both experiences. The students also have an opportunity to participate in one to two month rotations that expose students to neurological research or particular aspects of clinical neurology. These rotations typically are arranged between the student and the neurology clerkship director with a selected faculty mentor.
Cindy Zadikoff, MD
Director, Medical Student Education in Neurology