Original Publication
Open Access

Online Teaching and Assessment Modules for Rotations in Surgical Pathology

Published: August 16, 2012 | 10.15766/mep_2374-8265.9216

Included in this publication:

  • Instructors Guide.doc
  • Online Teaching Assessment

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Editor's Note: This publication predates our implementation of the Educational Summary Report in 2016 and thus displays a different format than newer publications.


These multimedia modules have been developed to teach senior medical students on their surgical pathology elective the basic microscopic features of common surgical pathology diagnoses. The modules include normal histology and pathology organized into the following organ systems: breast, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, gynecologic, liver, and lung. The first component to this teaching set is a review of normal histology which may serve as a comparison for the histopathology component. A low- and high-power micrograph of each organ is provided. The student is tested with a quiz of micrographs of normal histology where they must identify the organ. Next, students review commonly encountered biopsies in each organ system. Under each diagnosis is listed the definition, etiology, symptoms/indications for biopsy, gross features, microscopic features, and a differential diagnosis. Radiologic features and pertinent additional stains are noted when appropriate. The goal of the surgical pathology rotation at this institution is to allow students to function as junior house officers, actively participating in previewing and sign-out. These teaching modules will provide basic clinical and microscopic descriptions to help the student preview and diagnose biopsy specimens on their own. The clinical implications of certain diagnoses as they pertain to aggressive management in neoplastic disease will also be mentioned. The modules are designed so students can easily navigate between slides, diagnoses, and differentials. Each image is provided with arrows and labels (which may be hidden) to guide the eye of the learner to recognize the patterns of each diagnosis. After completing a module, students will solidify their knowledge with a quiz. We plan to monitor the effectiveness of this assessment by having students take the quiz at the start and end of the rotation to compare the change in their score. These modules will provide an organized foundation on which the student may build his or her knowledge during slide review with senior residents or staff pathologists.

Educational Objectives

By the end of the module, learners will be able to:

  1. Identify commonly biopsied organs microscopically.
  2. Formulate a diagnosis from micrographs of commonly biopsied organs.
  3. Discuss the pertinent clinical, pathologic, and microscopic features of common pathologic diagnoses.

Author Information

  • Bronwyn Bryant, MD: University of Washington School of Medicine
  • Amanda Maskovyak, MD: Cleveland Clinic
  • Linda M. Schiffhauer, MD: University of Rochester
  • Ronald Bryant, MD: University of Vermont
  • Wenqing Cao, BM, MS, MD: University of Rochester
  • P. Anthony di Sant'Agnese, MD: University of Rochester
  • Christa L. Whitney-Miller, MD: University of Rochester
  • Haodong Xu, BM, PhD: University of Rochester

None to report.

None to report.


  1. Amin, M. (2010) “Diagnostic Pathology: Genitourinay.” Amirsys: Salt Lake City, UT.
  2. Greenson, J et. al. (2009) “Diagnostic Pathology: Gastrointestinal.” Amirsys: Salt Lake City, UT.
  3. Hicks, D. and S. Lester. (2011) “Diagnostic Pathology: Breast” Amirsys: Salt Lake City, UT.
  4. Kumar, V et, al. (2009) “Robbins & Cotran Pathologic Basis of Disease.” Saunders; 8th edition.
  5. Odze, RD and Goldblum, JR. (2009) “Surgical Pathology of the GI tract, liver, biliary tract, and pancrease.” Saunders: Philadelphia, PA.
  6. Pernick, N. (2001, August). Pathology outlines. Retrieved January/February 2011, from http://PathologyOutlines.com
  7. Rosai, Juan. (2010) “Rosai and Ackerman’s Surgical Pathology.” Mosby; 10th edition.


Bryant B, Maskovyak A, Schiffhauer L, et al. Online teaching and assessment modules for rotations in surgical pathology. MedEdPORTAL. 2012;8:9216. https://doi.org/10.15766/mep_2374-8265.9216