The Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences
offers two clerkships
The four week career elective clerkship in Ophthalmology, offered once a year in July
The one-week required Ophthalmology clerkship, offered on an every other week schedule from August to April
The department also offers a half-day workshop during the fall for all M2 students as part of the Essentials of Clinical Medicine course.
The educational goal of the Department of Ophthalmology is to provide medical students with core instruction in the principles of the ophthalmologic examination. This includes the initial evaluation of eye emergencies, ocular trauma and other vision-threatening diseases seen by the primary care physician. The basic eye examination is taught in small groups, emphasizing hands-on experience from skilled faculty examiners.
Core reading materials are supplied to each student and a vast array of audiovisual materials are available to supplement the lecture series. Students are encouraged to attend all lectures and conferences, and may observe surgery in the operating room. In clinic, the students work up selected patients, under the supervision and guidance of both the resident and attending staff. These interactions enhance the learning and teaching process for both residents and students. At the completion of the rotation, a practical quiz is given covering the ophthalmologic examination. There is immediate grading and feedback, to maximize learning and allow students to address any questions.
4 Week career clerkship
1 Week required clerkship
Student Instructions & Expectations
The schedule: The hours for the rotation are 9:00am-5:00pm Mon-Fri. Every day we will have some combination of clinic/surgery, lecture, video, and tutorials on various parts of the eye exam. A detailed schedule is available on Blackboard. Students should report to EEI Basement, Room B110 on the first day.
Equipment: Having a hand held ophthalmoscope (regular or Pan-optic) is necessary for this rotation. For those who did not purchase one during medical school, perhaps they can borrow one from their classmates who are on other rotations.
Reading Material: There is an online self assessment consisting of approximately 50 questions/answers on Blackboard. Everyone is expected to complete these exercises. If you are unable to access the material on Blackboard please let the instructor know on the first day. For those who wish to do more outside reading, we recommend the textbook listed in Blackboard which is available online through the UIC library.
Eye photos: In the afternoon of the first day (Monday) everyone will have the option of having one eye dilated to have photos taken from their optic nerve (for those who are interested, the second eye can be dilated the next day to get the other photo taken). The digital photos of the optic nerve for each person will be provided to them on the last day of the rotation, while during the week they are used as a teaching tool to help everyone master the ophthalmoscopic exam.
Excused Absences are allowed for interviews, illnesses, emergencies and other required medical school activities. Please inform the instructor as early as possible so appropriate arrangements can be made. Per medical school policy only one day total can be missed from this rotation. Since all the examinations take place on Friday, it is impossible to make it up in that same elective. This means if someone has to miss Friday, they will need to arrange to come in on a different Friday to take the exams with other students.
Clinic: The weekly schedule contains a list of clinics and the recommended number of students for each clinic. You can decide as a group where each of you goes each day but we recommend that you change your assignment from day to day to see more variety. Please note that the pediatrics and retina clinics can only take one student at a time. If a particular clinic is not in session when you go there, please go to another clinic or you can always go to the operating room that day to watch anterior segment surgeries in room 19 or retinal surgeries in room 4. To evaluate the educational value of the clinic experiences, we would like to ask everyone to please document the total time spent in each clinic with a list of pathologies they saw during that time and their overall rating for that particular clinic experience (including positive and negative feedback). A form will be provided for this purpose.
Daily Journal: Students are encouraged to keep a journal throughout their 1 week rotation. At the end of each day, they can write down at least 5 items that they learned that day based on the video lectures, clinic experience, presentations, or tutorials. Each item should be descriptive enough such that another student not on the rotation can learn from reading their journal. The students who choose to keep a journal can email their journal items to the instructor on the last day to get feedback and to get answers to any remaining questions.
Presentations: Every student is expected to prepare a power point presentation about ophthalmology as it relates to their chosen specialty. This presentation should be emailed to the instructor by Wednesday at 2pm. The presentation will all be given on Wednesday afternoon and should include:
- The most important aspects of ophthalmology as it relates in their chosen specialty. If you have problems identifying a topic, please let the instructor know on the first day.
- The length of the presentation should be between 5 to 7 minutes with approximately 70% pictures/diagrams (videos up to 1 minute), and 30% word slides.
- The end of the presentation should include a summary slide followed in the next slide by three important questions based on their presentation (answers on a different slide). The instructor will then call on the individual students to answer these questions before the student reveals the answers on the next slide.
Final Exam: There will be a written exam based on the lecture videos and blackboard. The students may use their own hand written (non-photocopied) notes from the lecture and blackboard during the final exam.
Ophthalmoscopy Assessment: One of the important examination skills that you will master in this rotation will be the use of an ophthalmoscope. On the last day of the rotation everyone will demonstrate competency in this examination skill. Specifically, each person will use the ophthalmoscope (not Panoptic) to look at a non dilated eye and recognize the photo that matches the exam subject (based on cup/disc and the position of the veins and the arteries) among other decoy pictures. We will work with you closely throughout the time here to make sure you master this skill by the end. Likewise, we will work closely with those who do not pass this test and arrange a time to work one on one with the instructor and subsequently demonstrate proficiency in a future Friday when other students are being tested.
Fresh Approach to Ophthalmology: Read more about our Instructor, Dr. Amir Mehralian.
Contact: If you have any questions regarding your upcoming elective or would like to pursue an elective with our department, contact the instructor Amir Mehralian, MD at 612-965-2345 or email email@example.com; by Pager #: 3275 (DARK). You can also contact the Director of the Clerkship Ali Djalilian, MD, firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or concerns. We greatly appreciate your feedback in making this elective more educational and useful for you. Enjoy the elective.