Research as a Pedagogical Approach in Undergraduate Medical Education: An Experience

Document Type



Biological and Biomedical Sciences


The importance of health research training in medical education has been well-documented in the literature and is fully recognized at Aga Khan University Medical College (AKUMC). The goals and attributes of undergraduate medical education (UGME) at AKUMC emphasize the ability to become critical thinkers and conduct basic science research. In the UGME curriculum, research is a longitudinal theme throughout the five year program. AKUMC is one of few medical schools to have a designated research-based community health sciences (CHS) course in Year 4. However, to instill this capacity and interest in undergraduate students and to further systemize research training, a four week dedicated Introduction to Research module was recently introduced in Year 2. The aim of this innovative module was to give students the intellectual tools to investigate new problems and evaluate data critically, rather than solve the problem entirely. In keeping with the spiral nature of the curriculum, this module laid the foundation for research skills that are further expanded and utilized in a Year 4 CHS rotation. The Year 2 Research module is a curricular innovation that encourages analytical and creative thinking and promotes a research culture among students. It is a valuable addition to the undergraduate medical curriculum and along with the Year 4 CHS rotation, it serves to enhance knowledge, skills and attitudes that are now necessary for medical graduates.

Publication (Name of Journal)

Medical Science Educator