New Medical Education Building Enables 'Next Generation' Curriculum

August 23, 2010 — The Claude Moore Medical Education Building consolidates medical education programs and creates a central entrance to the School of Medicine. It opened this fall to the medical school's largest-ever class.

The five-story, 58,000-square-foot structure connects to Medical Research Building 5, facilitating access to the School of Medicine facilities in Jordan Hall and the Health Sciences Library. It also serves as the nucleus of the "Next Generation" Cells to Society curriculum, featuring innovative learning spaces and groundbreaking educational technology.

Its namesake is Dr. Claude Moore, a longtime radiologist in Washington, D.C., who graduated from the U.Va. School of Medicine in 1916. He died in 1991 at the age of 98 – at the time, the University's oldest medical alumnus.

The building integrates small-group learning and individual instruction with state-of-the-art educational spaces such as the "learning studio," a technology-enabled, active-learning classroom that provides an interactive, hands-on environment in which students work collaboratively in small groups.

The Next Generation curriculum eschews the traditional split of basic and clinical sciences. Instead, it provides a system-based learning experience that more deeply integrates basic sciences into clinical medicine, is oriented to clinical performance, and uses the best evidenced-based models for medical education to foster learning.

"We want the interaction with faculty to be much more meaningful than a recitation," Dr. J. Randolph Canterbury, senior associate dean for education, explained to medical students during orientation on Aug. 9 – the same day the new building was inaugurated and the new curriculum launched. "We believe it is much more important for students to interact with the faculty about what they have learned."

Students will learn and refine interpersonal and clinical skills in a single environment for clinical performance and education. The Clinical Performance Education Center will provide myriad opportunities for students to practice and demonstrate competency in cognitive and psychomotor skills in simulated clinical settings.

Also among the building's features are the Clinical Skills Center, which includes outpatient and inpatient training rooms, all with audio-visual capabilities, and mock emergency room, operating room, intensive care unit and labor and delivery rooms in the Medical Simulation Center.

CO Architects with Train and Partners designed the building, which cost around $40 million.