Division of Academic Innovation

AHSE: One Approach to Teaching Clinical Reasoning: Theater

Speaker: Kim Meyer, PhD, MPAS, PA-C, DFAAPA, Executive Director, Division of Academic Innovation 

Time: 12-1 pm, Friday, Dec 2nd (Lunch starts at 11:45 am) 

RSVP: Due by 1 pm, Wednesday, Nov 30th

The email confirmation for the event will contain the option to add the event to your calendar.


Session Objectives: 

  • Explore existing approaches to teaching clinical reasoning. 
  • Create 1 possible case study for implementation of Clinical Reasoning Theater in the curriculum. 

Session Overview: 

Clinical reasoning theater, developed by Borleffs, et. al. [Acad Med 2003;78(3):322-5], describes teaching the process of clinical reasoning using “actors” through the portrayal of a conversation between a provider and a patient.  

  • Three actors: the provider, the patient, and the learners (who form the “audience”). The performance occurs in two repeating acts.  
  • ACT I: Communication between provider and patient focused on Hx Taking, PE, etc.  
  • ACT II: “Time out” in which provider explains/ thinks out loud, to reveal the rationale for questions, line of reasoning, and/or need to show empathy.  
  • Audience members (the learners) question and provide suggestions for further dialogue with the patient resulting in another Act I and II cycle.  
Advantages to this approach:  
  • Builds on clinical teacher’s existing skills  
  • Reveals the physician’s “behind the scenes” thinking and decision  
  • Engage the audience (the learners) through Act II  
  • Could be applied to learning in the simulation lab 
Disadvantages to this approach: 
  • Exploration learners’ clinical reasoning is dependent on the clinical teacher’s facilitation skills 

Source: Clinical Reasoning Theater by Borleffs, et al 


Zoom link and passcode (AHSE22): https://unthsc.zoom.us/j/89388184003?pwd=a2dKdnE0SjJjSGw2KzQvRU9TZzNHdz09


Dec 02 2022


11:45 am - 1:00 pm

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Dec 02 2022
  • Time: 12:45 pm - 2:00 pm


LIB 400 and Zoom


Division of Academic Innovation
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