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  • Danielle Raja

Week #0: Looking Forward

Updated: Sep 29, 2020

I enrolled in the Master's in Medical Education program at Harvard intending to improve my skill as a teacher. I am making a career shift away from clinical practice and into teaching.


Last year, I taught at a local college in the nursing program. It was a great experience, however, I learned that I have so much to learn about effective teaching methods. I was expected to develop content and re-work an outdated curriculum. I was overwhelmed and convinced that I wasn't providing a good learning experience for my students.


As I developed my plan for moving forward as an educator, I reflected on this teaching experience. I realized that one area my students, doctoral-level nursing students, struggled in was statistics. They had taken the prerequisite statistics course and still had little grasp on how to apply those concepts to their own research projects. I spent much of my time explaining the concepts and the ways in which the students could apply them to their projects. It was rewarding to see them begin to understand.


I hope that this program can teach me the best ways to teach statistics. I believe that the majority of healthcare professionals and health professions students are taught statistics by mathematicians and economists who do not especially understand what a medical professional intends to do with the knowledge. We need to be taught by others within medicine, those who understand our unique perspectives and are aware of the ways in which statistical knowledge will be applied in our careers. I hope to become one such teacher.


I'm not exactly sure what the end-point is or if there is one. I don't know when I can say I've arrived as a teacher. I can only hope to develop a curriculum for my students that I believe is better than what I have experienced myself.



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