APA Summit on Medical Student Education Task Force on Informatics and Technology: learning about computers and applying computer technology to education and practice

Acad Psychiatry. Jan-Feb 2006;30(1):29-35. doi: 10.1176/appi.ap.30.1.29.


Objective: This article provides a brief overview of important issues for educators regarding medical education and technology.

Methods: The literature describes key concepts, prototypical technology tools, and model programs. A work group of psychiatric educators was convened three times by phone conference to discuss the literature. Findings were presented to and input was received from the 2005 Summit on Medical Student Education by APA and the American Directors of Medical Student Education in Psychiatry.

Results: Knowledge of, skills in, and attitudes toward medical informatics are important to life-long learning and modern medical practice. A needs assessment is a starting place, since student, faculty, institution, and societal factors bear consideration. Technology needs to "fit" into a curriculum in order to facilitate learning and teaching.

Conclusion: Learning about computers and applying computer technology to education and clinical care are key steps in computer literacy for physicians.

MeSH terms

  • Computer User Training*
  • Education, Medical / organization & administration*
  • Education, Medical / trends*
  • Electronic Data Processing*
  • Forecasting
  • Humans
  • Informatics*
  • Learning*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'*
  • Technology / education*