Online Case-Based Role Play: The Doctor's Dilemma

Vendor EPs
Author Information
John Sener, The Sloan Consortium
Institution(s) or Organization(s) Where EP Occurred: 
Integrated Medical Curriculum (Gold Standard Multimedia)
Effective Practice Abstract/Summary
Abstract/Summary of Effective Practice: 

The Doctor's Dilemma interactive medical ethics program uses text- and photo-based material to explore "complex or controversial issues found in contemporary medical practice."

Description of the Effective Practice
Description of the Effective Practice: 

How this practice supports access: The Doctor's Dilemma is an interactive, role-playing medical ethics program in a case-based format. This product is a collection of medical education content that enables users to:

  • Experience complex and controversial issues found in contemporary medical practice.
  • Gain a clear perspective of all aspects of ethical challenges and decision making involved to promote the best possible outcomes for patients.
  • Progress through a week in the life of a family physician, interacting with patients, their families, staff, and colleagues. Make decisions on 10 diverse cases involving complex issues, such as assisted suicide, abortion, AIDS/HIV, alternative therapies, artificial insemination, birth control, cancer, confidentiality, difficult patients, informed consent, life support, malpractice and research protocols.
  • Consult with experts on medicine, ethics, law, psychology, and religion. Explore consequences of alternative decisions."

The online version of this product uses text- and photo-based materials to create role plays based on a series of cases designed to explore complex or controversial issues in medical ethics. This technique appears to be an effective workaround to the current internet limitations which precludes using full-motion, full-screen video as many CD or other non-Web-based products do.

Supporting Information for this Effective Practice
Evidence of Effectiveness: 

The Doctor's Dilemma web site had a couple of testimonials for the product, as well as a link to a page of testimonials for related products. However, these links are no longer available [update 10/31/08].

Estimate the probable costs associated with this practice: 

The product is available on CD-ROM; prices vary according to vendor [update 10/31/08]  Two places to try:

Buy used:
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Other Comments: 

What's also interesting about the testimonials for this and other products in the Integrated Medical Curriculum series is that they demonstrate how students are using, indeed depending on, learning resources outside the normal curriculum to help them succeed, and sometimes finding that such resources are far superior to those supplied to them in their courses. Navigating the conversational flow of the case studies, in particular the arrows and the 'wait for document to load fully' message, can be a little confusing at first, but works quite smoothly once you get the hang of it. -- js

Contact(s) for this Effective Practice
Effective Practice Contact: 
Individual licenses, phone #s: 800-375-0943 (813-258-4747 outside the U.S.)