Internationalization of Medical Education: Collaborations Inititated through the American ASsocaiton of Anatomists (AAA) and the Anatomical Society (AS) meetings lead to succesful Educational Partnership

Anette Wu, Helke Kielstein, Sakurai Takesha, Geoffrey Noel, Suvi Kristiina Viranta-Kovanen, Li Tsai-Kun, Liisa Kyllikki Kuikka, Kevin Roth, PAulete Bernd

Research output: Conference materialsAbstractpeer-review



International collaborations are very important for successful internationalization of medical education (IoME) projects. We have previously reported our experience in IoME within the Anatomy course, using international small group peer-to-peer and student exchanges. In this follow-up study we have expanded our project to include more countries, along with making changes to the international conference. We now include two partner schools that became involved through connections initiated at the AAA 2016 meeting and the AS meeting in 2017.

Preclinical Anatomy students (medical and dental) from 6 different countries participated in 5 video conferencing sessions, including one large international student videoconference. The above was followed by international student exchanges - involving basic sciences summer internships. Partner countries/schools included the USA (Columbia University, New York), Germany (Martin Luther University, Halle-Wittenberg), Japan (Kyoto University, Kyoto), Canada (McGill University, Montreal), Finland (University of Helsinki, Helsinki), and Taiwan (National Taiwan University, Taipei).

The relationships between the partner schools were made possible via interpersonal connections - two of the schools became involved following presentations at the AAA meeting and the AS meeting, and subsequent communication between representatives of the institutions involved.

110 students in 6 countries participated in this project, consisting of 20 small groups. To date, 23 students have indicated an interest in visiting their peers during the summer (2018), while conducting research fellowships in the host country - 13 students from the USA, and 10 students from partnering countries.

Two countries (i.e., Canada and Finland) that were not previously part of the program were included following connections made during the AAA meeting and the AS meeting. These countries have become popular destinations for student internships – so far, 4 students from the USA will be interning in Finland and 1 will intern in Canada. 2 students from Finland are scheduled to intern in the USA, 1 Canadian student will intern in Japan and another Canadian student will intern in the USA.

In addition, following our presentation at the AS meeting in 2017 a new partnership with the United Kingdom was formed, and collaborative efforts are underway.

Results from student feedback on this year’s project are still pending.

Without the AAA and AS meetings the additional partnerships would not have been possible, since recruitment of new partner schools has proven to be challenging without interpersonal connections. Therefore, professional societies such as the AAA and the AS (and their meetings) are important resources for collaboration and long-term professional partnerships – benefiting students, teachers, and institutions.

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This abstract is from the Experimental Biology 2018 Meeting. There is no full text article associated with this abstract published in The FASEB Journal.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 23 Apr 2018

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