Associate Dean

How would you like to have been young Albert Einstein’s teacher? Walter Isaacson’s excellent biography, “Einstein. His Life and Universe” provides some intriguing glimpses of the great physicist’s early education that should be of interest to anyone involved in teaching gifted and naturally curious young people. Popular myth holds that Albert Einstein was a poor student in early life. Apparently … Continue reading

 At the end of each academic year, the graduating medical class selects faculty it wishes to recognize for outstanding contributions to their educational experience. This is always a difficult task for them, given the number and quality of the teaching faculty they encounter during the four-year curriculum.   The most prestigious such recognitions are the Connell Awards. Named in honour … Continue reading

I get asked this question a lot, mostly by those much younger than I – students, my children, nieces, nephews. It’s usually accompanied by an expression of pity that one would normally reserve for viewing the fossilized remains of extinct species. What they’re really wondering is “How could anybody in their right mind like baseball?”, or “Are you really that … Continue reading

There shouldn’t be much more to say about this subject. The highly contentious and divisive issue of medical assistance in dying (MAID) has been widely and publicly discussed. From a legal perspective, the issue has been settled in Canada. Citizens can now opt to have their lives ended given they fulfill certain criteria. The medical profession and our hospitals have … Continue reading

Over two full and very busy weekends in March, about 600 young people from across Canada are invited to Queen’s to apply for admission to our medical school. As they do so, they are welcomed, guided and encouraged by our first year class. Part of their welcome to our school is a video they screen for the applicants and their … Continue reading

  Preventive medicine: Medical practices that are designed to avert and avoid disease. For example, screening for hypertension and treating it before it causes disease is good preventive medicine. Preventive medicine takes a proactive approach to patient care.   Clinical medicine and medical education often intersect in intriguing ways. The concept of Preventive Medicine, defined above, is well understood and … Continue reading

  “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.” Yogi Berra   Mr. Berra definitely had a knack for the deceptively profound. This is one of my favourite “Yogi-isms”. He reminds us, in his inimitable style, that making and committing to a decision can be difficult but essential if we are to progress. In contrast, indecision, can … Continue reading

Can a nation be characterized? Is it possible, or at all reasonable, to ascribe traits and qualities to an entire people, as one would for individuals? Until recently, I thought the answer to that question was clearly “no”, and that attempts to do so were rather narrow-minded, fodder for advertisers and late night television hosts, but not worthy of serious … Continue reading

Last October, on an airline flight from Detroit to Houston, a passenger became seriously ill, eventually losing consciousness. The attendants asked for medical help. A doctor on the flight came forward to provide assistance. One of the flight attendants refused to allow the doctor to attend the patient without some proof of their qualifications, despite verbal reassurances and the patient’s … Continue reading

“The study of history is an antidote to the hubris of the present – the idea that everything we have, everything we do and everything we think is the ultimate, the best.” David McCullough   Mr. McCullough’s wise words can also serve as a reminder that the various challenges we find so troublesome today almost always have parallels in the … Continue reading

Post Timeline

Five things to do this summer: a Med Ed to-do list
Published Mon, June 19, 2017

This first year I worked in a post-secondary setting, I was somewhat bemused when students asked me how I was going to spend my summer – they were heading out on a three or four month “break” and assumed I was doing the same. Some had work plans, some travel, some both. Regardless, they would be away from campus and … Continue reading

Doctors, patients, ritual and showing up
Published Mon, June 12, 2017

Ritual is a big part of life; this is especially evident at universities at this time of year. I recently took part in the ritual of attending convocation at another university to watch my daughter receive her Bachelor of Health Sciences degree. In addition to the parental joy of seeing my daughter on stage for about six seconds of hooding … Continue reading

Sorry to interrupt but I just had this great idea: How learning about and adapting communication styles can help move group learning forward
Published Mon, June 5, 2017

When I last wrote to you in March, I asked if you were a constructive or destructive problem-solver in groups.  We do a lot of small group (and larger group) learning in Queen’s UGME and I hoped to give a great framework to help prevent groups from imploding before or while constructive work could be done. We looked at identifying … Continue reading

Curriculum Committee Meeting Information – April 26, 2017
Published Wed, May 31, 2017

Faculty and staff interested in attending Curriculum Committee meetings should contact the Committee Secretary, Candace Miller (candace.miller@queensu.ca), for information relating to agenda items and meeting schedules. A meeting of the Curriculum Committee was held on April 26, 2017.  To review the topics discussed at this meeting, please click HERE to view the agenda. Faculty interested in reviewing the minutes of … Continue reading

Teaching Einstein
Published Sun, May 28, 2017

How would you like to have been young Albert Einstein’s teacher? Walter Isaacson’s excellent biography, “Einstein. His Life and Universe” provides some intriguing glimpses of the great physicist’s early education that should be of interest to anyone involved in teaching gifted and naturally curious young people. Popular myth holds that Albert Einstein was a poor student in early life. Apparently … Continue reading