Firecracker’s platform supports schools who wish to integrate proven learning strategies throughout their programs in a pedagogically robust manner. The table below lists just a few studies highlighting the impact to student outcomes that these proven techniques enable.
We occasionally get questions on FERPA compliance so I thought I'd share some of our thoughts from working through these questions with our 20+ school partners.
If we (Firecracker or any other service/product provider) are an institutional affiliate, schools can share Personally Identifiable Information (PII) with the service/product provider. This is usually well understood by our partners and common practice in the industry.
Many of our school partners ask us how they can utilize Firecracker to help support some students that fell behind a specific course or a few courses during their first year in medical school. Some students can be asked to re-do their first year, but in certain cases where a student only struggled in one course they would like the student to remediate just that specific course. Due to staff constraints and inflexibility of traditional Learning Management Systems (LMS), many schools can't easily leverage the original course material and have no way of monitoring their progress for whatever work they need to complete.
If you’ve ever wondered, there’s a lot that goes on behind making a Firecracker question. Here’s a glance into some of the details that go unnoticed. You’ll see how serious (and picky) we are with the process.
As we turn the corner into 2017, many students and faculty at medical schools shift their focus toward planning for licensing exams. For schools that integrate preparation for these exams into their curriculum, they probably know which students are at risk of underperforming. Here is a screenshot of the dashboard we provide to our partners:
In the event that you are looking for some reading over the holidays, we highly recommend the annual Medical Education issue (12/6/2016) of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). You can listen to the Editor's Audio Summary by Robert M. Golub, MD, Deputy Editor of JAMA or read full articles using the online JAMA reader app.
Firecracker is here at AAMC 2016 and we'll be posting some insights from many of the great sessions. One of these sessions was LCME Accreditation: A Tool for Improvement, presented by the following faculty and staff:
We're excited to launch our new Institution Dashboard at this year's AAMC Conference. Swing by our booth (#429) which is strategically located right across from the food and beverage area. Our team is already on the ground and we'll be there through Tuesday 11/15. You can learn more about our new dashboard and how best to connect with us by visiting our dashboard page:
Source: National Resident Matching Program
The Step 2CK is the second part of the USMLE board exam and is used to assess a medical student’s clinical knowledge. Despite comprising a third of the entire USMLE board exam, the Step 2CK is often regarded as less important than the Step 1, requiring significantly less effort and preparation. I spoke with a residency director who told me that while a strong Step 1 score is important for matching with top-tier residency programs, the need for strong Step 2CK scores is evident. Rising Step 1 scores, combined with ever-increasing competition for a limited number of residency berths, are making the step 2CK more important for all medical students.
The U.S experienced a surge in the number of medical schools being built during the ‘60s and ‘70s that were followed by a sharp fall in that number during the two decades between the '80s and 2000 when only one medical school was built. Insufficient federal support provided little incentive to found new medical schools leading to a two decade period of nearly static medical school enrollment rates. The New England Journal of Medicine attributed this slump to a physician surplus (in 1990 the U.S had 238 active physicians per 100,000 citizens although only 138 per 100,000 were estimated to be required), but the doctor shortage we are faced with today has necessitated new medical school development.