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2013 Alpha Omega Alpha Robert J. Glaser Distinguished Teacher Award

Stuart Slavin, M.D., M.Ed., Saint Louis University School of Medicine

Stewart Slavin

Dr. Stuart Slavin, M.D., M.Ed., has demonstrated a passion for medical education and curricular design over his 26 years in academic medicine. As professor of pediatrics and associate dean for curriculum at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine (SLU), Dr. Slavin teaches as much as he works behind the scenes to shape the school’s education program. He recently spearheaded a comprehensive restructuring plan for the four-year undergraduate medical curriculum that was quickly approved and began implementation this academic year.

Before coming to SLU, Dr. Slavin served in numerous capacities at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). He was co-founder of the doctoring curriculum, “which became a national model for curricula addressing underrepresented topics at medical schools across the country,” explains Philip Alderson, M.D., dean of SLU School of Medicine. At UCLA, Dr. Slavin also was the primary architect of the colleges system that focused on enhancing the educational experience for fourth-year medical students. He also led a redevelopment of UCLA’s pediatric clerkship curriculum.

Dr. Slavin has continued to lead similar curricular innovations at SLU. Known as an advocate for student welfare, Dr. Slavin directed an effort to improve the mental health of medical students through curricular change and developed programs to help students deal with the stress of medical school. The initiative has led to marked decreases in rates of depression and anxiety in medical students in their preclinical years at SLU.

In addition to his work with the curriculum, Dr. Slavin is actively involved in teaching medical students at SLU. He has revamped and expanded the existing Patient, Physician, and Society course series, which spans the first three years of medical school. Dr. Slavin serves as the course director for each of these courses, and also directs a three-week required capstone for fourth-year students.

Dr. Slavin has received dozens of teaching awards at UCLA and SLU. His teaching receives consistently high reviews from his students, making him “one of the highest rated teachers in the medical school,” says Dr. Alderson. In the words of one such student, “Dr. Slavin is an excellent teacher because he takes complex subjects and makes them simple to understand. I appreciate that instead of focusing on excessive detail, Dr. Slavin taught overarching principles that can then be used to remember why certain diseases present in a particular fashion.” “He speaks to students with such sincerity, passion, and on a level of equality,” says another student. I especially like his anecdotes because they offer a glimpse into the real-life situations of medicine.”

Dr. Slavin received his B.S. degree from Haverford College, his M.D. degree from Saint Louis University School of Medicine, and his M.Ed. degree from the University of Southern California.

Alpha Omega Alpha Robert J. Glaser Distinguished Teacher Award

This award provides national recognition to faculty members who have distinguished themselves in medical student education.