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Teaching in the Clinical Setting


Last Updated:
April 25, 2023

First Published:
April 25, 2022


Prior to the start of a clinical rotation or experience, faculty should discuss their expectations of learner performance with the learners. Topics to discuss should include goals and objectives/outcomes, teaching strategies, evaluation and feedback techniques, daily schedule, clinical duties, case presentations, writing notes, supervision hierarchy, modes of communication, and other pertinent policies.  

 One Minute Preceptor (OMP), also known as the 5 micro skills of teaching, is a 5-step case-presentation framework facilitated by faculty used to assess decision making skills. After the learner has given a brief summary of the patient’s case, the faculty asks the learner to make a commitment, e.g., what’s going on with this patient, what do you want to do. Once the learner has committed to a diagnosis or plan, the faculty asks the learner to provide evidence to support the decision. Then, based on the learner’s responses, the faculty provides a general teaching rule, reinforces what was done right, and corrects mistakes. (Neher, 2003) 

SNAPPS is a learner-centered case-presentation framework that allows faculty to assess clinical reasoning skills. The learner follows the mnemonic to summarize the patient, narrow the differential, analyze the differential, probe the faculty, plan the management, and identify an issue for self-study. Faculty can visualize the learner’s clinical reasoning skills and identify gaps in performance.  (Wolpaw, 2003) 

Use the comments section below to let us know your ideas about teaching in a clinical setting.

  1. Before setting expectations, take some time to think about and write down your expectations for learner performance. 
  2. When using the OMP, give a teaching point that is easily generalizable to other patient cases. 
  3. When using the SNAPPS framework, the faculty takes on a facilitator role and allows the learner to lead the case discussion.