How to assess the quality of school's rotations before you attend?

Peach Newport

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Searched but could not find.

When looking at DO schools, how can you tell if they have good rotation sites? All I know is Wards=Good, Preceptor=Bad, and as far as I know, schools that send you to hospitals for rotations are wards based?

Please correct me.

So how can a school have 20-30 hospitals that they send students to, all within 30 miles, and still have "bad rotations?"
 

hallowmann

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Schools that send you to hospitals with residencies where you will be with an educational team are wards based.

Also, wards = good, preceptor = bad is more of a guide than a hard and fast rule. There are plenty of amazing preceptor rotations and plenty of terrible wards rotations, it really depends on the sites and docs involved, which you will basically have no idea about.

The only objective way to evaluate is to look at site lists and see how many places have medium to large bed sizes and have residencies.

Another thing you can do is find upperclassmen at schools you're interested in and straight up ask them, but that will be more subjective.

As a rule all established (as in they have sent a few classes on rotations/their rotation sites have taken students for some time) DO schools will have their fair share of great rotation sites and crappy ones. This is from the best of the best established DO schools to the worst.

It's possible the non-established schools have some decent sites as well, but again its untested and the sites have potentially never taken students before, which honestly makes for a terrible and at best an unreliable one.
 

NecrotizingFasciitis

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Going off of OP's question, is there a database somewhere that sums up where DO schools have rotations? Or do you have to actively research each individual school on their website? I'm just starting to look into this type of thing.
 

kelminak

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Going off of OP's question, is there a database somewhere that sums up where DO schools have rotations? Or do you have to actively research each individual school on their website? I'm just starting to look into this type of thing.
From what I've seen, some schools list this openly while others aren't as clear and instead just give general locations. I don't think it's required for them to disclose it, but I don't think they're necessarily hiding it either.
 

hallowmann

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Going off of OP's question, is there a database somewhere that sums up where DO schools have rotations? Or do you have to actively research each individual school on their website? I'm just starting to look into this type of thing.
You'll have to go to each school's site. The thing is a database will be short-lived because sites are always in flux. Schools lose and gain them regularly.

Here's a thread that might be useful from last year:

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/clinical-rotations-by-school.1164345/
 

Ho0v-man

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You'll have to go to each school's site. The thing is a database will be short-lived because sites are always in flux. Schools lose and gain them regularly.

Here's a thread that might be useful from last year:

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/clinical-rotations-by-school.1164345/
Just want to second by saying that the clinical rotations thread is an awesome resource and was very helpful when I was deciding where to go. It really needs to be kept going IMO.


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chizledfrmstone

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Go to a school that meshes well with the way you learn. As a 3rd year student I've learned that in pre-clinicals you will thrive as long as you are motivated and responsible about your own education.

Check for things like curriculum, mandatory attendance, required activities, and board study time.

No matter how much research you do for 3-4th year it's still a crapshoot. The rotations at my school have changed so much in 2 years that I could never have accounted for it. In-fact all the sites I was interested are now gone.
 

ctran019

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Go to a school that meshes well with the way you learn. As a 3rd year student I've learned that in pre-clinicals you will thrive as long as you are motivated and responsible about your own education.

Check for things like curriculum, mandatory attendance, required activities, and board study time.

No matter how much research you do for 3-4th year it's still a crapshoot. The rotations at my school have changed so much in 2 years that I could never have accounted for it. In-fact all the sites I was interested are now gone.
Thank you for putting things into perspective. That being said does anyone know of a DO school thats notorious on SDN for poor clinical rotations?
 

LUCPM

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No schools will advertise they have poor rotation sites, which is why it's hard to find out in the first place. Even established schools cannot accommodate all of their students with good rotation sites.

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AnatomyGrey12

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Thank you for putting things into perspective. That being said does anyone know of a DO school thats notorious on SDN for poor clinical rotations?
LMU, KYCOM, Basically the more rural the school then it probably has more bad rotations than good ones. That isn't hard and fast though because I've been told that WVSOM actually has some pretty great rotations.
 
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ortnakas

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This is almost impossible to answer because at most schools there's a lot of variability between sites and even within sites. For example, one might have awesome psych and IM but awful OB & peds.

Generally ward-based is better, since you need to learn to function as a resident, but I agree with @hallowmann that it's not always the case. A great preceptor might in some instances give you a better learning experience than a team at a malignant program. So look for places that offer ward-based at least some of the time, but I don't think some rotations with preceptors are the deathly blow to your career that a lot of SDN believes them to be.
 
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SLC

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This is almost impossible to answer because at most schools there's a lot of variability between sites and even within sites. For example, one might have awesome psych and IM but awful OB & peds.

Generally ward-based is better, since you need to learn to function as a resident, but I agree with @hallowmann that it's not always the case. A great preceptor might in some instances give you a better learning experience than a team at a malignant program. So look for places that offer ward-based at least some of the time, but I don't think some rotations with preceptors are the deathly blow to your career that a lot of SDN believes them to be.
N=1 obviously, but at my programs rank meeting this past cycle, DO was synonymous with (unknown quality of clinical year's). DO's were still ranked high and matched fine; but that was a comment I heard our PD use. There was no dividing one DO school from another. It was just DO, they're all viewed the same.

Fortunately we have taken DO's for a while and they perform as well as the MD's clinically in the overwhelming majority of cases. So it's not a huge issue (here at least)
 
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ctran019

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LMU, KYCOM, Basically the more rural the school then it probably has more bad rotations than good ones. That isn't hard and fast though because I've been told that WVSOM actually has some pretty great rotations.
I was on the fence about both those schools anyway. This puts the last nail in the coffin.
 

IslandStyle808

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Schools that send you to hospitals with residencies where you will be with an educational team are wards based.

Also, wards = good, preceptor = bad is more of a guide than a hard and fast rule. There are plenty of amazing preceptor rotations and plenty of terrible wards rotations, it really depends on the sites and docs involved, which you will basically have no idea about.

The only objective way to evaluate is to look at site lists and see how many places have medium to large bed sizes and have residencies.

Another thing you can do is find upperclassmen at schools you're interested in and straight up ask them, but that will be more subjective.

As a rule all established (as in they have sent a few classes on rotations/their rotation sites have taken students for some time) DO schools will have their fair share of great rotation sites and crappy ones. This is from the best of the best established DO schools to the worst.

It's possible the non-established schools have some decent sites as well, but again its untested and the sites have potentially never taken students before, which honestly makes for a terrible and at best an unreliable one.
Agree with the vast majority of your points, but there is a shade of grey with the last one. The exceptions to this rule were ACOM and MUCOM who both had clinical affiliations with hospitals that have taken medical students in the past. Both their first 3rd year classes had excellent rotations. Your right, it comes down to research of the schools through whatever sources are possible.

I am still pondering about whether I should make a thread about finding sites with GME (not as reliable as talking with students though). Kind of busy at the moment, but we shall see.
 
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LMU, KYCOM, Basically the more rural the school then it probably has more bad rotations than good ones. That isn't hard and fast though because I've been told that WVSOM actually has some pretty great rotations.
Actually this is not necessarily true, some schools in big cities or near big cities wind up competing with larger medical schools for rotation spots and their students get shut out of quality clinical education.

WVSOM is an old school, the older schools usually have their act together.
 

Ho0v-man

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While we seem to take it very seriously here on SDN, keep in mind that no ones ever going to say "That guy went to DMU. Sure some DOs have lackluster clinical education, but those guys are legit! Let's interview him." Everyone gets lumped in together.

Also, n=1, but I know a brain surgeon who went to KYCOM. It's not the end of the world.


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