Undergraduate Medical Education

Pediatrics Clerkship at Boston Children’s Hospital

The Pediatrics Clerkship at Boston Children’s is intended to give a broad introduction to pediatric medicine, to develop comfort with interacting with pediatric patients and their families, and to build skills in the examination of pediatric patients.

The six-week long clerkship will provide experiences in the outpatient primary care clinic seeing both well children and those presenting for evaluation of an urgent complaint; in the newborn nursery; and on the inpatient wards.

Objectives and Competencies

Common Objectives for the Core Clerkship in Pediatrics:

  1. To use pediatrics as a model to teach the core skills of clinical medicine.
  2. To understand the importance of development as a concept (e.g., physiologic, psychosocial, etc.) within pediatrics
  3. To develop familiarity with commonly encountered acute and chronic pediatric illnesses.
  4. To understand the importance of providing family-centered care.

Competency 1: History taking and physical examination skills (Data gathering)

The student will be able to obtain a complete history and perform a complete physical examination on all patients across all pediatric age groups including newborns, infants, toddlers, children, and adolescents.

Competency 2: Data presentation skills

The student will effectively and professionally communicate information about the patient, history and physical, diagnosis and treatment plan to other caregivers and to the patient/family.

Competency 3: Core knowledge and clinical thought process

The student will be able to recognize common pediatric conditions and formulate differential diagnoses and management plans. When a particular diagnosis is not seen via clinical encounters, additional reading materials including CLIPP cases may be used to augment learning.

Competency 4: Professionalism and interpersonal skills

The student will demonstrate intellectual curiosity, initiative, responsibility, and reliability in patient care and self-directed learning.

Typical Schedule

The clinical clerkship in pediatrics is made up of four different experiences. Each student will have a slightly different schedule, including:

  • two weeks caring for inpatient general pediatric patients
  • two weeks of “selective” either on a sub-specialty inpatient rotation, in the ED, or additional time on general pediatrics
  • one week in the outpatient clinic
  • one week in the newborn nursery

On the Inpatient services (both general pediatric and sub-specialty), hours are typically 6:20am-5:00pm. Students will rotate through a block of 2-3 nights, 5:30pm-7:30am. While weekend and holiday responsibilities will be rare, there will be some weekend nights and ED shifts.

The nursery and outpatient weeks are call-free without weekend responsibilities. Hours are typically 8:00am-5:00pm.

The weekend after the shelf is off for all students.