The reason I didn't attend OSU was the 3 different pathways. I thought that this essentially divided the class and created resentment between the groups. But today it was confirmed that the pathways are no more. OSU has gotten rid of the pathways and moved into an intergrated curriculum. No more PBL, LD, OR IS!!! They finally got the picture!
Gee, if that's true, then that's a real shame. I think that most people felt that succeeding in medical school was a priority that far outweighed hooking up socially with their 220 classmates.
Many of the Independent Study students were parents with small children. This pathway allowed them to study out of the home, and also to extend their first two years over three years if they chose. Thus they could plan for time off to have summer months off with their kids, or to deliver a pregnancy without missing an entire month of school and having to repeat and delay their graduation.
Several of the Problem Based Learning students were folks with learning disabilities. The freedom to utilize their own methods of learning which they knew to be successful for them allowed them to not only perform adequately, but even to excel. One guy was visually impaired and couldn't function well in the traditional auditorium lecture environment - couldn't see the screen well enough. He ended up with one of the highest step 1 scores in the class, using his own study techniques.
I honestly don't recall any resentment between the pathways. Of course you got to know the people best who you worked closely with, but everyone was just trying to do the very best job they could. Having different accomodations to different learning styles seemed to allow more people to do this.
I'm a 2nd year student at OSU and it's true that they're eliminating the PBL program. However, they're keeping the Independent Study Program. They've introduced a new "Integrated Pathway" that is supposed to integrate some small group/case study learning (hopefully like the PBL experience, but we'll see). They're doing away with the PBL program, in large part, to gather all of their faculty resources into the new pathway. I'm a PBL student and absolutely love it and will be sad to see it go - it works very well for me.
I don't feel that there is (or was) any resentment between the pathways -- sure, everyone thought their way was the best, but that just shows that people have different learning styles.