Jefferson Surgical Solutions


As Professor of Surgery, Division of Colorectal Surgery; Director, Surgical Undergraduate Education, Jefferson Medical College (JMC); Program Director, Colorectal Residency Program, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital; and Chair, Curriculum Committee, JMC, Gerald A. Isenberg, MD, FACS, is equally focused on – and passionate about – clinical practice and medical education.

Indeed, as he reflects on his career at Jefferson, which spans nearly 25 years, Dr. Isenberg is appreciative of the opportunity to build a busy and vibrant colorectal surgery practice. But he clearly also values his experiences as an educator – particularly the many opportunities to lead and innovate.

In years past, Dr. Isenberg spearheaded the adoption of Problem-Based Learning, a teaching method designed to strengthen students’ critical-thinking skills. He also chaired a taskforce that explored the topic of professionalism and developed a blueprint for infusing professionalism throughout the curriculum.

About 10 years ago, Dr. Isenberg created a fourth-year course, “Scientific Foundations of Clinical Medicine,” in which students revisit some of the basic sciences they learned early in medical school and explore how they apply to clinical medicine. These days, Dr. Isenberg is part of a team that’s exploring health information technology and its impact on medical education and the practice of medicine.

“As a teacher, I continue to emphasize the importance of critical thinking,” Dr. Isenberg says. “The information explosion in medicine makes it impossible to assimilate all medical knowledge. Instead, I focus on planting seeds – teaching students how to nurture and fine-tune their reasoning skills.”

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