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Kevin Hittle 1 Article
The 6 degrees of curriculum integration in medical education in the United States
Julie Youm, Jennifer Christner, Kevin Hittle, Paul Ko, Cinda Stone, Angela D. Blood, Samara Ginzburg
J Educ Eval Health Prof. 2024;21:15.   Published online June 13, 2024
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3352/jeehp.2024.21.15
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Despite explicit expectations and accreditation requirements for integrated curriculum, there needs to be more clarity around an accepted common definition, best practices for implementation, and criteria for successful curriculum integration. To address the lack of consensus surrounding integration, we reviewed the literature and herein propose a definition for curriculum integration for the medical education audience. We further believe that medical education is ready to move beyond “horizontal” (1-dimensional) and “vertical” (2-dimensional) integration and propose a model of “6 degrees of curriculum integration” to expand the 2-dimensional concept for future designs of medical education programs and best prepare learners to meet the needs of patients. These 6 degrees include: interdisciplinary, timing and sequencing, instruction and assessment, incorporation of basic and clinical sciences, knowledge and skills-based competency progression, and graduated responsibilities in patient care. We encourage medical educators to look beyond 2-dimensional integration to this holistic and interconnected representation of curriculum integration.

JEEHP : Journal of Educational Evaluation for Health Professions