The Curbsiders podcast

#16 Teach Internal Medicine like Master Educator Robert Centor MD

October 24, 2016 | By

Dr. Robert Centor’s Knowledge Food, Part 1.  This Halloween, the “Curse of Knowledge” is REAL!  So you think you can teach? This master clinician educator, known for “Centor’s Criteria,” schools us the most common errors made by medical educators and how to improve learner retention.  While we only scratch the surface, Season 1’s arguably penultimate episode should NOT be missed.  After all, how else are you going to learn about Pretty Pimpin’?  Stay tuned for Part Duex when we briefly review Pharyngitis and Dr. Watto finally learns about Lemierre’s Syndrome!  As always, you’re welcome.

Clinical Pearls:

  1. Don’t fall victim to the “Curse of Knowledge!”  Remember that your students/residents do not know what you know!
  2. Effective rounding should include a healthy mixture of both table-top and bedside rounds.
  3. Feedback should be specific, timely (even immediate!), and focused on improvement.  
  4. Allow the learner to self-evaluate before providing specific feedback and invite all members of the team to provide collaborative feedback.
  5. Always remember that feedback should be positive as well as constructive.
  6. There are multiple courses available to further your own skills as a medical educator
  7. The physician-educator should embody the “servant leader” and prioritize medical education (the “service” you are providing).
  8. Consider blogging to improve your own writing!

Dr. Centor’s “Take-Home” Points:

  1. The “Curse of Knowledge” is real — never assume the basics are known.
  2. The attending physician should embody service before self.
  3. Dr. Centor’s playlist — Matt Duncan, Lawrence, Saint Paul and the Broken Bones, Houndmouth, Kurt Vile

Dr. Centor reports no relevant financial disclosures for this topic.

Learning objectives:
By the end of this podcast listeners will be able to:

  1. Understand the basics concepts that underscore effective feedback (specific, timely, and collaborative)
  2. Identify the tenants that underscore effective rounding
  3. Re-evaluate your own teaching style and consider training seminars to improve your skills as a medical educator

Links from the show:

  1. Dr. Centor’s Blog —
  2. Dr. Bradley Sharpe’s profile —
  3. Stanford Faculty Development Course —
  4. UCSF Workshop – “Developing Skills in the Art of Effective Feedback” —
  5. Ten Tips for Receiving Feedback —
  6. Who should take statins? —
  7. Kurt Vile – “Pretty Pimpin” —
  8. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
  9. Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip and Dan Heath


    CME Partner


    The Curbsiders are partnering with VCU Health Continuing Education to offer FREE continuing education credits for physicians and other healthcare professionals. Visit and search for this episode to claim credit.

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