Integrative medical education: educational strategies and preliminary evaluation of the Integrated Curriculum for Anthroposophic Medicine (ICURAM)

Patient Educ Couns. 2012 Dec;89(3):447-54. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2012.04.006. Epub 2012 Jun 26.


Objectives: the development and preliminary evaluation of a new medical program aimed at educating students in patient-centered integrative care and developing appropriate educational strategies.

Methods: The Integrated Curriculum for Anthroposophic Medicine (ICURAM) was developed with modules on anthroposophic medicine integrated into the full 6 years of the regular medical curriculum. The educational strategy is the ESPRI(2)T approach, combining Exploratory learning, Supported participation, Patient-based learning, Reflective practice, Integrated learning, an Integrative approach and Team-based learning. The student participation, assessed based on the number of credit points earned per year (ctp/year) through the ICURAM (1 ctp=30 h workload), served as a preliminary indicator of student interest.

Results: Of the 412 55%medical students participated in the program: 16% full participation (≥ 4 ctp/year), 18% partial participation (1-3.99 ctp/year) and 22% occasional participation (0.25-0.99 ctp/year). The amount of additional workload taken on by students was between 7.8h/year for occasional participants, 33 h/year for partial participants and 84 h/year for full participants.

Conclusion: More than half of medical students were willing to invest a significant amount of additional time in the optional program.

Practice implications: An integrative medical curriculum with a student-centered educational strategy seems to be of interest to most medical students.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anthroposophy*
  • Curriculum*
  • Education, Medical, Undergraduate / methods*
  • Female
  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Integrative Medicine / education*
  • Learning
  • Patient-Centered Care / methods*
  • Practice, Psychological
  • Program Development
  • Program Evaluation
  • Students, Medical / psychology