How UIC faculty research influences the curriculum

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Speakers: Dr. Spyros Kitsiou, Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical and Health Information Sciences, Dr. Joanna Abraham, Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical and Health Information Sciences & Dr. Miriam Isola, Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical and Health Information Sciences

Summary: UIC’s faculty members bring their own research and industry knowledge into their curriculum. They believe using real-life applications helps students understand the challenges facing present-day healthcare. It broadens their understanding beyond theory and prepares them to tackle their own organization’s issues.

Learn more about UIC’s health informatic programs.


How does my research activity in the area of M Health influences my teaching? Well, I believe that both research and teaching are two inter-dependent elements of my work. As a researcher, before I embark on a new research study, I always take the time to inform myself by reading extensively many articles, scientific articles in different areas to get an understand, knowledge about the topic. What I usually do is I build a comprehensive knowledge that I would like to bring into my classroom and many of the articles that I come across I always include in my lectures and I try to give students an understanding of the challenges that we face in healthcare and how does M Health, the application of mobile technologies and wearable devices can support some of these, or find solutions to some of these problems.

I do a lot of research with patient care teams with respect to rounds and I expose my students in the health informatics program here that you are not going to be working in silo, you’ll be working with other team members. How do you achieve a shared understanding? I do tell them or explain to them, “Okay, you know that you are in a multi-disciplinary team rather than just clinician clinician focused and how do you deal with other people? How do you explain to them what you are trying to do? How do you share information?” These are certain aspects that I bring it back to my curriculum and use my curriculum to train those students to understand real world problems because this is something you face not just in health care, you do it in day to day life. That’s how I work on my curriculum development as well as my research.

It’s really important for students to benefit from real things that organizations are doing, so that it’s not purely theoretical and they’re applying what they’ve learned in a real situation. This really brings the concepts home and is something that they take with them. When they graduate and they go out, they’re going to be doing these kinds of things in organizations.