Archive for Monday, April 23, 2012

Heard on the Hill: Site to connect potential students with current ones via video; KU researcher diagnoses dinos with osteoarthritis; newspaper looks at experience of first-year med students in Salina

April 23, 2012


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• Increasingly, when looking for a college, potential students find themselves online, looking for reviews of potential universities.

One of these sites,, is launching a new service that allows prospective students to have video chats with current students for $30, according to a little newspaper up the road a bit, which has a pretty good article on its services.

Most of the reviews on the site are available for free, and I poked around at the stuff on KU, which streamlines pretty well with some of the stuff I hear out and about (it’s fun to go to basketball games, Western Civ is hard, some stereotypes include that KU is a bunch of snobby liberal elites, etc.).

It’s just one more tool in students’ toolbox as we count down to that all-important May 1 deadline to decide to commit to where prospective students will go in the fall.

• A KU researcher and his colleages have possibly diagnosed the oldest-known case of osteoarthritis.

Bruce Rothschild, who works as a professor of internal medicine at Northeast Ohio Medical University and as a research associate at the KU Museum of Natural History, has published new research showing that found some dinosaurs suffering from the condition, according to this article in the New Scientist.

He and his colleagues found that three of the 10 available fossils of the bird-like dinosaurs, Caudipteryx, showed signs of osteoarthritis.

Why the dinosaurs, about the size of a peacock, developed the condition isn’t really known.

The researchers were looking to find when the condition first showed up.

• The Salina Journal wrote this update on the experience of the first-year medical students there.

One student described the pace of learning like getting a new stack of pancakes every day. If you don’t eat the whole stack, you’ve got two stacks to eat the next day.

The students are participating in lectures in Kansas City and Wichita connected by big-screen TVs and webcams and microphones.

Some ideas apparently haven’t taken off as well with students so far, including an effort to match students with older students in Wichita and KC to get advice on issues they’re facing. That’s been hit-or-miss, the students reported.

And some students said the podcasts of lectures they get haven’t been heavily used.

All that and a bunch more at the original story.

• The reason Heard on the Hill is better than eating a stack of pancakes every day is because of the awesome tips I get sent to, so keep sending them my way.


LJD230 6 years ago

Looking forward to the results of the USMLE exams for these distance medical school learners in Salina.. It will be interesting to see the comparison with the scores of the kids in Kansas City.

Medical schools do not garner an international reputation for excellence by producing country doctors. The reputation is garnered by the integration of basic science and clinical sicience and the graduation of physician scientists who pursue residencies sponsored by great medical schools at major hospitals on the east and west coast.

And not for nothing, lots of learning in medical school occurs outside the classroom and hosptials as a result of the interactions students have each with the other as they share their knowledge and insight.

If Kansas wants to regionalize medical education, perhaps it might want to follow the Texas model and establish real academic centers with academically affiliated hopsitals in Houston, San Antonio and Dallas.

KU will always be a medical school of the second rank until it establishes more clinical resources for both it's undergraduate and post graduate students. Why aren't the hospitals in the western part of the state branded as "a teaching hospital of the University of Kansas"?

Other than xenophobia, what compelling reason reason exists for NOT establishing an academic affiliation with St. Luke's?

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