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  • Dickman Schuster book

    New Book! Active Education for Future Doctors (Nomy Dickman and Barbara Schuster, Eds.)

    From the Back Cover:

    This book is designed to aid the faculty of medical and other health related schools in developing the pedagogical skills to transform their teaching in multiple settings including the classroom, the conference room, the ambulatory office, and the hospital from a passive learning experience to an active learning experience. In this transformation, the teacher morphs from the ‘all knowing expert’ to the ‘learning facilitator and coach’. After a brief review of adult learning theory the remainder of the book will focus on a broad variety of teaching techniques and classroom activities that ‘flip’ the classroom from a passive to an active learning environment. In addition to condensed explanations of each of the techniques, examples of each process will be presented with suggestions for flexing the techniques to better accommodate a variety of learning settings and a diversity of learners.

    • Edited and written by active educators practicing in various fields, providing diverse perspectives on the broad range of methods of active learning.
    • Provides practical examples to implement various methods of active learning.
    • Presents flexible techniques to complement the discussion of teaching elements and components.

    About the Editors:

    Nomy Dickman is currently the head of the unit for Development and Evaluation of Education at the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine. She received her Ph.D. in Science Education from the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa.

    Barbara Lynne Schuster, MD, MACP, is a Clinical Professor in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Georgia, and an affiliated Professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Haifa.

    Table of Contents:

    • Back to the Future: Changing the Education of Medical Students - Dickman, Nomy (et al.)
    • Preparing Teachers and Learners - Schuster, Barbara
    • Giving a Great Lecture: Going from Fine to Fantastic - Gilbey, Peter
    • Active Teaching–Active Learning: Methods and Variations - Dickman, Nomy (et al.)
    • Clinical Teaching: The Bedside and Beyond - Eilat-Tsanani, Sophia
    • Assessment of Clinical Education - Luder, Anthony
    • Medical Humanities and Active Learning - Bentwich, Miriam Ethel
    • The Power of Experiential Learning in Essential but Challenging-to-Teach Subjects - Spitzer-Shohat, Sivan (et al.)
    • Crossing the Cultural Chasms - Bisharat, Bishara
    • Students as Near-Peer and Peer-Teachers - Karasik, David (et al.)
    • Interprofessional Education - Shinwell, Eric
    • Developing Lifelong Learners - Schuster, Barbara
    • The Ethics of Teaching - Weingarten, Michael A.

    To purchase, go to Amazon or Springer.



  • students at work

    Russell Berrie Foundation Supports Azrieli Students in the Fight Against Corona

    The novel Coronavirus, Covid-19, took us all by surprise. At the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine especially, we had to act fast. The Galilee, with its noticeable health disparities, was a source of major concern for the Covid-19 outbreak. We quickly created a roundtable with our community partners and affiliated hospitals and HMOS, and luckily, with the generous support of the Russell Berrie Foundation and the enthusiastic dedication of our medical students and staff, we were able to make a noticeable change in the Galilee and north of the country.

    “What started as an emergency has actually morphed into a chronic situation,” explained Dr. Sivan Spitzer-Shohat who spearheaded the endeavor. “At the Faculty we have always dedicated ourselves to being socially accountable to our community, and this is a perfect example. It has also proven to be an excellent teaching and learning opportunity.” Under the new project, medical students are sent to the field – primary care clinics across the Galilee community – to reinforce the medical establishment in the north during this crisis. So far, 60 medical students have been placed in clinics. Among other tasks, they follow-up on chronic patients via telephone calls and home visits, filling a crucial void. About 20 more students will be added in the second phase.

    In the past, medical students have expressed difficulties emanating from cultural differences with the local population, and lack of understanding; this project opens up the lines of communication for not only the patient, but also the practitioner. By stepping out of their comfort zones, it is proving to be a learning experience for all involved, bridging gaps while also offering critically necessary and urgent medical services. The students are learning alongside chronic care management, cultural competence practice, and the population is gaining from the increased presence of medical personnel who are there to treat as well as educate.

    Prof. Skorecki, the Dean of the Faculty, also expressed his enthusiasm for this endeavor, adding, “This has proven to be an excellent opportunity to create a long-term platform with our community partners to improve the health of the Galilee.”

    Thanks to the Russell Berrie Foundation, we can see some positive outcomes of Covid-19! This new project, born out of an acute immediate need, will ultimately serve the long-term chronic medical needs of the Galilee and north of the country.



  • student volunteer

    Azrieli Students Helping to Fight Corona

    Azrieli Faculty students – like all of us – are adapting to the new reality, Covid-19. On March 13, 2020 a call for volunteers went out and Azrieli medical students indeed jumped right in.

    Magen David Adom quickly trained the students in how to properly protect themselves and do Corona testing. Then, with a rental car, they began their work on March 15, 2020. Activity grew and grew, until eventually the national Corona "drive ins" were set up, and the IDF stepped in with a fresh source of manpower. Omri Cohen, a three-year track student who was at the helm of the initiative, mentioned how challenging the beginning was, with endless work, but how at some point everyone functioned "on autopilot." He tells of doing testing at a Bnei Brak old age home after Pesach, and struggling with the cultural challenges and physical discomfort of the protective gear.

    Some students found themselves helping out at a local hospital, doing triage at the ER, and others working with the elderly who live alone at home.  Those with lab experience were recruited to help in the laboratories. And of course, "Physicians Assistant" has become a household word, with the Ministry of Health calling on medical students to help out professionally in this capacity with the epidemic.

    Pre-clinical studies have continued, albeit online, and even solutions to online clinical learning are being initiated, in order to continue keeping pace with the academic requirements and not lose previous time.

    In the beginning, many students found themselves asking many questions, due to the uncertainty – should I be leaving my apartment in the north? Where should I spend Pesach, risk my family's health if I go home? But a new rhythm seems to be falling into place.

    As Omri Cohen said, "We are a country that is used to emergencies. We are fighters. This is just another war we are fighting, and I feel like I am in miluim [reserve duty]."

    We wish them health and success in their studies and endeavors.

    Photo credit: דין אריאל, התאחדות הסטודנטים לרפואה בישראל

  • Dr. Maayan Gruber

    Dr. Maayan Gruber Receives Excellent ENT Research Award

    At a recent national ear, nose, and throat (ENT) conference in Eilat, Dr. Maayan Gruber was awarded the prize for excellent clinical research.

    Of fourteen preliminary papers, six were chosen to be presented at the conference. Dr. Gruber's paper was cited as the outstanding research - the effect of a program of intervention on reducing medical mistakes on hospitalized children. This study was also carried out by Rozeen Abu Shqara for her MD thesis. Abu Shqara is a medical student at the Faculty.

    Dr. Gruber was recently appointed senior clinical lecturer at the BIU Azrieli Faculty of Medicine. He is head of pediatric ENT and pediatric otolaryngology specialist at the Galilee Medical Center in Naharia


  • White Coat Ceremony February 2020

    Three-Year Track White Coat Ceremony

    • On February 12, 2020, proud and excited, 44 students from the three-year track (those having returned from medical schools abroad) received their white coats in the famed "White Coat Ceremony" traditionally held at medical schools. These students comprise the 9th graduating class of the Bar-Ilan University Azrieli Faculty of Medicine. Offering warm greetings and congratulations were Prof. Karl Skorecki, Dean; ProfEric Shinwell, Associate Dean, Medical Education; and Prof. Johnny Younis, Vice Dean, Clinical Studies. A representative of the parents association also came to the podium to express her thoughts.

      In addition to the speeches, a short film was shown and the students participated in a musical performance (pictures can be seen here).

      Refreshments were served, and souvenirs were distributed, to make sure everyone went home from the momentous evening with tangible memories above and beyond the white coat.

      After such an intensive period of studies, the evening, shared by family members and friends, was warm, welcoming, and positive, excitedly looking forward to the next stage of medical education and training.



  • Sivan Spitzer Shohat

    Community Diabetes Workshop

    In February 2020, approximately 50 participants representing the Israeli health system and five Galilee community municipalities took part in a diabetes workshop, led by Dr. Sivan Spitzer-Shohat, Principal Investigator HEAL - Health Equity Advancement Lab and Head of Population Health Education at the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine. The goal was to shed light on the Faculty's planning for a diabetes center.

    Using design thinking methodology the participants each reviewed the diabetes patient pathway to discuss their pains and gains and current efforts to address diabetes. Afterwards, the groups convened to discuss possible solutions and areas for cooperation.  The workshop ended with group presentations to all participants. 

    Dr. Spitzer-Shohat enthusiastically shared that "Positive feedback included shared sentiments by the participants, that the Faculty serves as a connecting force for all of the different actors in the Galilean health ecosystem."

  • David Peleg

    Dr. David Peleg: One of Most Cited AJOG Papers Over Past Two Years

    Dr. David Peleg, head of the High-risk Unit at Ziv Medical Center in Safed's Department of Gynecology & Obstetrics, has just been informed by Dr. Roberto Romero, Editor-in-Chief for Obstetrics of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, that his paper, published in 2018 in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, “A randomized clinical trial of knotless barbed suture vs conventional suture for closure of the uterine incision at Cesarean delivery,” is one of the top-cited papers over the last two years in AJOG, as determined by Scopus. Each year, AJOG recognizes top-cited papers presented at the SMFM and published in AJOG. Dr. Peleg's contribution will be the subject of recognition during the Awards Ceremony at the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine.

  • Milana Frenkel-Morgenstern

    Frenkel-Morgenstern's team the only Israeli group to take part in groundbreaking study generating most comprehensive map of cancer genomes charted to date

    Dr. Milana Frenkel-Morgenstern's team was the only Israeli group to take part in the genomics and transcriptomics studies of the Pan-Cancer Analysis of Whole Genomes Project (PCAWG), also known as the Pan-Cancer Project. A collaboration of over 1,300 scientists and clinicians from 37 countries, more than 2,600 genomes of 38 different tumor types, were analyzed, creating a huge resource of primary cancer genomes. Sixteen working groups studying many aspects of cancer’s development, causation, progression and classification ensued.

    Two of the PanCancer papers resulting from this collaboration have just been published back-to-back in Nature, among five papers published in Nature from the PanCancer consortium: 



    These projects were carried out over the past seven years and are the most comprehensive study of whole cancer genomes to date, significantly improving our understanding of cancer and offering new directions for diagnosis and treatment.

  • Naharia ceremony jan2020

    Certificates of Appreciation Awarded to Clinical Instructors, Galilee Medical Center (Naharia)

    On January 30, 2020, Azrieli Faculty clinical instructors from the Galilee Medical Center in Naharia were awarded certificates of appreciation for their hard work. Dean Karl Skorecki opened the ceremony, praising the close and special relationship between the Faculty and affiliate hospital. Following the Dean, Prof. Eric Shinwell, Associate Dean of Medical Education, spoke, then Dr. Naomi Dickman Head of Educational Evaluation and Advancement, read aloud kind words from the students. Dr. Masad Barhoum, GMC General Director then offered words of thanks to the excellent instructors. In all, 56 outstanding doctors were awarded by the Faculty for their excellence as clinical instructors.


  • Ayelet Shai

    Dr. Ayelet Shai to join new research fellows forum at Int'l Center for Health, Law, and Ethics at Haifa University

    Dr. Ayelet Shai has been invited to join the new research fellows forum at the International Center for Health, Law, and Ethics at Haifa University. This interdisciplinary forum includes law, ethics, sociology, and anthropology researchers, to name a few. Her current research will include gender and medicine and end of life care, in light of the Dying Patient Act (2005).

  • Tzipora Falik-Zaccai

    Prof. Falik-Zaccai Appointed to National Committee for Multi-center Clinical Trials

    Congratulations to Prof. Tzipora Falik Zaccai who was appointed member of the national committee for multi-center clinical trials, by the Directorate of Medical Technologies, Informatics & Research of the Israeli Ministry of Health.

  • Erez Onn

    Dr. Erez Onn Appointed Head of the Government Hospitals Division

    Dr. Erez Onn, General Director of The Baruch Padeh Medical Center, Poria (an Azrieli Faculty of Medicine affiliate hospital) has been appointed Head of the Government Hospitals Division. Congratulations!

  • תוכנית לימודים חדשה בפקולטה לרפואה- צפון ירו"ק

    New Program: Tsafon Yarok

    Tsafon Yarok is a new program at the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, accepting new students for the coming academic year, 2020-2021.

    This new and exciting program is geared towards students who would like to call the Galilee home, to those who would like to specialize in Family/Rural Medicine. This field of medicine is quickly growing worldwide, and requires multidisciplinary knowledge and skills, which will be taught to those selected to join the team. Students who have been accepted will be prepared for this specialty and internship and will then become Family/Rural Medicine specialists who will work in the Galilee communities. They will acquire a broad, multi-cultural, patient-oriented outlook and approach, and will work with an excellent team of professionals.

    The track includes 4 years of study, combined with close intimate work with communities from the North. Ten students will be chosen for this learning community. Mentors and adoptive communities will accompany the entire process.

    Studies include:

    • Pre-clinical coursework in the sciences as well as humanities and social sciences
    • Clinical work in hospitals in the North
    • “Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship” (focused community-immersed learning through all stages)

    Applicants must be accepted to the Azrieli Faculty and pass an additional screening acceptance process.

    A meeting will be held March 18, 2020 at 16:00. For more information, write to biu.medicine@biu.ac.il.

  • Menachem Fisher

    Dr. Menachem Fisher Recipient of ISOG Ob/Gyn Award

    On January 9, 2020, the Israel Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ICOG) held its annual conference and conferred upon Dr. Menachem Fisher a prestigious certificate of appreciation. Dr. Fisher, viewed as a visionary, has through his involvement, contributed considerably to patients, colleagues, and to the advancement of the fields of ob/gyn and fertility in Israel.

    Dr. Fisher studied medicine at the Technion, specializing in ob/gyn at the Rambam Hospital. He proceeded to pursue a sub-specialty in "mother and fetus" at the University of Vancouver. Returning to Israel in 1986, Dr. Fisher chose to settle down in the Galilee where he devoted himself to women's health in the Galilee, all the while recruiting senior gynecologists from all over the country to join him in this mission.

    Dr. Fisher established the Society for Community Gynecology and served as its head for many years. He made other physicians and scientists aware of this important field of medicine and as such is being awarded a certificate of appreciation by the ICOG.


  • Omri Cohen

    Student Spotlight on Omri Cohen

    Meet Omri Cohen, 33, a third-year student at Bar-Ilan University’s Azrieli Faculty of Medicine and President of the Medical Student Association of the Galilee. Born and raised in Petach Tikvah, the former lawyer and Israeli Navy Command and Operation Officer is enrolled in the Faculty’s three-year MD study track for Israelis who completed three years of pre-clinical medical studies abroad. Glad to be back in Israel after attending medical school in Italy, Omri is engaged in clinical work at Safed’s Ziv Medical Center – one of six area hospitals affiliated with the Azrieli Faculty.

    One of 600 students at the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, Omri was the BIU rep on the Israeli delegation to the General Assembly of the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations, held in Taiwan last August. “We were vastly outnumbered by the many delegations from Arab countries and there was also a vocal Palestinian group, but I think we had a very positive effect and it may have curbed attempts to boycott Israel,” relays Omri. “We introduced ourselves as having served in the IDF and had discussions with activists from various nations, including Iran and Iraq, who initially seemed hesitant to talk to us. We were even invited to Morocco by one of the delegates.”

    Why I chose to study this area:
    After initially earning a double bachelor’s degree in law and government at IDC Herzliya and interning at a legal firm specializing in the area of medical negligence, I decided that my true passion is medicine. I began my medical studies in Italy and then, after three years, applied to Bar-Ilan University’s Azrieli Faculty of Medicine. This is a wonderful program and the only one in Israel that enables Israeli students who began their medical studies abroad to return home. We don’t feel like the odd ones out. I like the idea of studying in the Galilee and the national and Zionist vision of improving medicine in the periphery of Israel and, specifically, in the Galilee.

    What I enjoy most at BIU’s Azrieli Faculty of Medicine:
    Because we are a small faculty of medicine and are engaged in intensive study, we feel like we’re part of a family, of a cohesive community. We are close to the Faculty’s academic and clinical staff. Everything is very open and we know each other on a first-name basis. I also like the quality of medical training. This academic year, we have already done three rotations in surgery and one in family medicine, and I have also worked on research projects for our dissertation concerning mental fatigue of medical students during their long, arduous training, and changes in cardiac muscle in people who have started a running regimen. And, of course, here in Safed, I just love the view of the Sea of Galilee and Mt Hermon.

    Future Plans:
    Next year, I will be doing a one-year internship at an Israeli hospital before officially getting my MD title. After that, I definitely plan to specialize in a surgical field. I like working with my hands. All of the surgical clerkships are very long – usually about six years – and it’s a serious commitment. There are so many possibilities. I would like to stay in Israel in the long-run but I might consider accepting a fellowship to the US for the latter part of my surgical training.

    My favorite corner on campus:
    The small grassy area outside of the main building where one can relax – but I rarely have time to sit. With my very busy schedule, I’m constantly on the move from the hospital to the Faculty, where I study and teach, and mentor outstanding high school students from the periphery who hope to pursue a medical career. I also teach anatomy and physiology at Tel-Hai College, which is about an hour away from our own faculty.

    What I will take with me from my Bar-Ilan University studies:
    A sense of humility and a commitment to improving healthcare in the Galilee. Because the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine is situated in the periphery, we are exposed to different communities than what we would generally see elsewhere in Israel. Here there’s a mix of Moslem, Druze, Christian and Jewish populations. We need to remember that we don’t have all the knowledge and we must be able to look patients in the eyes without feeling superior or acting in a patronizing manner, but to be there for them. After spending three years in Safed, I am so much more aware of the need to upgrade the quality of medical care for the diverse populations in Israel’s north.