Robert Kirsner | Blended Learning

Blended Classroom MDR 616 and MDR 659 – Dermatology

This case study examines the purpose, execution, and and results of the Miller Schools of Medicines’ Dermatology course redesign. This redesign employed a “blended strategy” where students were provided content online through Blackboard via Softchalk learning modules using Kahn-style videos.

Case Study in Brief

Course: MDR 616 & MDR 659

Instructor: Dr. Robert Kirsner

Number of Students: 200

Semester: Fall 2014

Duration: Dermatology is part of a two-week module in December for 2nd-year medical school students


The purpose of this blended classroom design was to promote an active learning environment where students applied knowledge gains and related academic content to real-world scenarios through a series of case studies.

Dermatology YouTube Playlist

Key Benefits

  • Support multimodal learning and multimedia expression
  • Increases student self-assessment and performance
  • Encourages digital literacy
  • Promotes deeper learning and high-impact educational practices
  • Increase student engagement
  • Make learning visible
  • Catalyze institutional change


  • BlackBoard LMS
  • Softchalk
  • Kahn-style videos
  • YouTube widgets
  • Google Docs
  • eTextbook
  • Qualtrics
  • Panopto (or other lecture capture software)

Case Study Summary/Survey Results

  • Most students entered with minimal online or blended learning experiences
  • Students self-assessed their performance through carefully-choreographed reflection and practice opportunities that allowed them to learn at their own pace
  • Knowledge gains increased as demonstrated from pre-course, mid-course, and final exams
  • 80% of students “Agreed” or “Strongly Agreed” that the case studies related academic content to real-world scenarios
  • Students slightly exceeded final exam performance when compared against previous semester scores where traditional teaching methods were used
  • Nearly ¾ of the class reported they “Agreed” or “Strongly Agreed” that ’Cane Academy methods are favorable for future lessons

Derma Results

Dermatology 2

Dermatology 3

Additional Resources