Members of the Harvard community are being given special early access to HMX Fundamentals, an innovative online learning program from the Harvard Medical School Office of Online Learning. Applications for spring courses are now being accepted.
The new pilot program begins on Feb. 7. Exclusive access to the groundbreaking HMX Fundamentals courses on immunology and physiology is now available to Harvard faculty, staff and students, as well as their friends and family, before wider access is granted later this year. Applications are due Jan. 17.
“We want to use this unique educational material to inspire learners in the Harvard community and help to build on their passion for biomedical science,” said David Roberts, HMS dean for external education.
Reaching more learners
Using the broad and deep scientific and educational resources of HMS, HMX courses combine narrated videos, interactive modules and state-of-the art biomedical visualization to help medical and other pre-health career students learn fundamental concepts in the health sciences.
HMX students engage with the content by solving problems using the basic biomedical principles they’ve learned throughout the program, making direct links between science, clinical medicine and patient health.
“We’re building a unique learning experience aimed at topics that are pivotal for the future of medicine and patient care.” —Michael Parker.
Students can then discuss course material and their solutions to patients' problems in discussion forums, with advanced students and faculty moderators facilitating the discussion.
HMX courses are currently offered through institutional partnerships around the globe, in which students use the materials to prepare for rigorous medical-training programs. Incoming students at Thailand’s Khon Kaen University and the Florida Atlantic University Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine are able to take advantage of this online program, which is also available to students at HMS and HSDM.
Anyone affiliated with Harvard University is invited to apply to this spring’s program. The courses are designed for anyone interested in pursuing careers in health care.
The HMX platform takes advantage of the latest advances in the science of learning, the dynamism of multimedia, and cutting edge biomedical visualization to enable experiential learning at a distance, said Roberts, also an associate professor of medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
“We want to foster students’ understanding of fundamental principles and show how these concepts are used on a daily basis in taking care of patients,” said Michael Parker, HMS associate dean for online learning.
“The goal is to do that in a way that will be both engaging and relevant to learners’ careers,” Parker said.
HMX Fundamentals offers foundational courses presented in an engaging way and that tie fundamental concepts directly to clinical practice. This fall, HMX ran a pilot of the online program open to high-school students who expressed interest in a wide range of career goals.
“We had a lot of students who want to be doctors, but we also had learners taking the courses who want to become nurses, pharmacists or physician assistants—or even work on the policy side of health care,” said Sophia Snyder, director of academic operations at HMX.
In addition to courses offered on immunology and physiology, HMS is also developing online courses on genetics and biochemistry set to launch in the summer of 2017, with additional courses to roll out each year as the curriculum grows.
“We’re building a unique learning experience aimed at topics that are pivotal for the future of medicine and patient care,” said Parker.
Find out more about the HMX Fundamentals Harvard Community Pilot here.