Background. The arts and humanities form a critical part of medical education. In this study, we explore medical students' reflections following an arts and humanities experience. An intensive day and a half long program focused on music and reflection was designed for first-year students at Harvard Medical School. Methods. Students completed an evaluation of the experience with both open-ended and Likert scale questions. Data were analyzed using a mixed methods approach. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze quantitative data and inductive content analysis for qualitative data. Results. 168 first-year medical and dental students participated in the activity. Survey response rate was 73% (n=122). Quantitatively, the overall quality of the experience was assessed at a mean value of 4.86 points (SD=0.37 points) out of a maximum of 5, with 5 being excellent. The qualitative evaluation illustrated how the arts and humanities experience encouraged students to reflect on their leadership and doctoring skills, taking a holistic approach to their medical education, and integrating the lessons of the arts and humanities into their medical practice. Conclusion. The arts and humanities program encouraged student reflection on profound questions in medicine related to empathy, vulnerability, and authenticity. This experience broadened students’ perspectives regarding the relationship between medicine and the arts and humanities.
Harz, Dominique; Schwartz, Andrea Wershof; Lee, Truelian; Jones, David S.; Hundert, Edward M.; Wong, Lisa M.; and Pories, Susan E.
"Learning Harmony: Medical Student Reflections on the Intersection of the Arts & Humanities and Medicine, A Mixed Methods Study,"
Health Professions Education: Vol. 9:
2, Article 3.
Available at: https://hpe.researchcommons.org/journal/vol9/iss2/3