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Opinion: Let mastery of concepts rule the education of health professionals, not prespecified testing

We need a new model of educating health professionals in which they advance after mastering competencies, not because they pass an exam after a set period of time.

When I compare my days at Harvard Medical School more than 50 years ago to the experience of medical students today, I’m struck by the tremendous change that has taken place. Today’s students are learning about health care costs and how to work in teams. They are moving away from hospital settings and training in community centers and even in patients’ homes. And they are learning in small groups, viewing their teachers more as coaches than as all-knowing authorities. One thing has remained the same: We still determine

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