ID Experience: The Art and Science of Medicine

An online course can bring people together and establish authentic bonds. While professors can often fear incorporating technology in the classroom, instructional designers at ODEE can help ease the transition by providing guidance from start to finish.

Diane Habash, a professor in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, was unsure how her course would translate into an online setting. Her ‘The Art and Science of Medicine’ course is dedicated to helping Health Science students understand the demanding nature of their field while giving them the skills needed to persevere in their jobs.

Habash explained that her hesitancy to an online format was rooted in the fact that she used the in-person classroom environment to create and inspire relationships between students.

“Describing the art of medicine and its evolution means helping a person realize how medicine was once delivered with a deep sense of caring, humility, and heart.” Habash shared. “Demonstrating this in an online setting seemed nearly impossible.”

Habash was uncertain that a personal connection could happen online and did not know where to begin. After working with John Muir, a senior instructional designer, Habash felt comfortable transforming her course into an engaging and social online space.

Muir worked with her throughout the transition and collaborated with Habash to create projects and assignments that inspired students to create relationships with one another and understand the compassionate core of the course. Students responded positively to the online format and grasped the importance of care and compassion in the medical field

Students enjoyed assignments that encouraged them to slow down, share stories, and experience the world around them. Some of the projects included TED talk style presentations, touring the Medical Center for art, and reacting to various American Medical Association posts. They were able to share a more personal side of them and show what they are passionate about.

“I was afraid that this wouldn’t happen online, but it did,” Habash shared. “John’s suggestions really helped the students open up and helped me to become a better professor.”

For more information on how you can transition your class to an online format, visit the ODEE course development website.    

Screenshot of a course project developed by Habash and Muir

Professor Diane Habash and senior instructional designer John Muir collaborated to create projects and assignments where students could demonstrate what they learned during the course. Over all, students reacted positively to the online assignments and developed authentic relationships with their fellow students by sharing personal stories.