Preceptor's Handbook

Preceptor's Handbook

The handbook is written for physicians who teach office-based internal medicine to third-year medical students. It has two purposes:

  1. To assure that preceptors know about the clerkship and the educational objectives for students.
  2. To suggest teaching strategies preceptors can use to help students achieve those objectives.

Ambulatory education is inherently decentralized. In the Ambulatory Component of the Internal Medicine Clerkship at Yale, students are dispersed across 30 general medicine sites and 12 subspecialty offices. No two sites are the same. They employ different physicians to serve different patient populations. Some practices employ one physician while others employ many.

Within the decentralized structure of ambulatory education, a major educational challenge is to assure that each student receives high-quality instruction under a uniform curriculum. Wherever students are assigned, they should encounter preceptors who are capable of helping them achieve the objectives of the clerkship rotation. The purpose of this handbook, therefore, is to inform preceptors of the educational objectives for the Ambulatory Component of the Internal Medicine Clerkship. In addition, the handbook reviews basic strategies for successful office-based precepting. In the 15 years since office-based teaching has made its comeback, much has been learned about how to make it work for patients, students, and preceptors. The suggestions in this handbook are derived from many sources to help new preceptors hit the road running and to help veteran preceptors master new skills.

Please let me know if there is anything I can do to facilitate your work and boost your satisfaction with clinical teaching.

Thank you for teaching in this clerkship.
Walter N. Kernan, M.D.