Hand holding a Social Media 3d SphereThis month marks our second ALiEM-Annals Resident’s Perspective discussion. Similar to the ALiEM-Annals Global EM Journal Club series and the first Resident’s Perspective piece on Multiple Mini Interviews, we will be discussing the most recent Annals of Emergency Medicine Resident’s Perspective piece on the Integration of Social Media in Emergency Medicine Residency Curriculum. We hope you will participate in an online discussion based on the paper summary and questions below from now through August 1, 2014. Respond by commenting below or tweeting using the hashtag #ALiEMRP.

Google Hangout with the Authors

On July 31, 2014, we will be hosting a 30 minute live Google Hangout on Air with Drs. Kevin Scott (@K_ScottMDand Mira Mamtani (@MiraMamtaniPenn), the authors of the Annals of Emergency Medicine Resident’s Perspective paper on the how social media is being used in the EM educational curriculum. Also joining will be Drs. Stella Yiu (@Stella_Yiu), Michael Gisondi (@MikeGisondi), and Seth Trueger (@MDAware). Be sure to tune in! Later this year, a summary of this blog- and Twitter-based discussion will hopefully be published back into the journal.

  • 00:00 Bryan Hayes makes introductions
  • 01:06  Kevin Scott discusses the impetus for writing this paper.
  • 05:40  Mira Mamtani discusses (1) how to engage faculty in the use of social media technologies in residency education and (2) how this fits in with ACGME standards
  • 09:45  Stella Yiu talks about the flipped classroom and tips for success
  • 12:39  Seth Trueger talks about the role of social media in academia as well as about quality assurance
  • 15:05  Michael Gisondi talks about innovative practices at his institution and how to overcome barriers in bringing in “more senior” faculty.
  • 21:23  Wrap up final points and comments by the panelists

Annals of EM Resident Perspective Article

Scott KR, Hsu CH, Johnson NJ, Mamtani M, Conlon LW, DeRoos FJ. Integration of Social Media in Emergency Medicine Residency Curriculum. Ann Emerg Med. 2014 Jun 21. [early release] PMID: 24957931. Free PDF download (2.1 MB)


This article is excellent overview of the current landscape of social media use and perspectives specifically in the graduate medical education world of EM. The authors, based in the University of Pennsylvania, share not only an introduction to social media and examples of best practices in medical education, but more importantly discuss the several barriers to more mainstream adoption of digital technologies.

Modalities and concepts discussed included:

  1. Blogs
  2. Podcasts
  3. Videocasts
  4. Twitter
  5. Google Hangout
  6. Flipped classrooms

Barriers discussed included:

  1. Generational gaps may lead to a lack of familiarity with social media
  2. Social media, such as Twitter, may cause a distraction and disrupt other aspects of residency education
  3. Core knowledge is currently less represented in social media content
  4. Residents may over-rely on social media education without critically appraising the literature
  5. Quality assurance is a constant concern amongst educators because social media resources, such as blogs, typically lack peer review before publication
  6. Learners may be overwhelmed by information overload using social media
  7. There is no validated study showing an objective improvement in resident knowledge and learning with social media
  8. As with everything in social media, privacy and professionalism issues are an underlying concern

FOAM Discussion to Date

The role of social media in the future of medical education is one of the most discussed topics among educators and students in the FOAM community. A comprehensive review of content produced since 2013, accomplished using FOAMSearch and Google queries, revealed 10 blog posts, 4 podcasts, and 2 open access journal articles discussing the role of social media in emergency medicine education. These resources, listed below, are a great overview of the many perspectives already shaping the role of social media in medical education. For those new to the idea of FOAM and social media in academia, be sure to check out Chris Nickson’s overview of FOAM at Life in the Fast Lane.

Website Title Author Type Country Date
Academic Life in Emergency Medicine New AIR Series: ALiEM Approved Instructional Resources Andrew Grock Blog USA 7/16/14
The Rolobot Rambles #FOAMed and #SMACC: Revealing the Camouflaged Curriculum Damian Roland Blog United Kingdom 7/1/14
The Poision Review Must-read: getting started in online emergency medicine education and FOAMed Leon Gussow Blog USA 6/28/14
Emergency Medicine Cases Social Media & Emergency Medicine Learning Anton Helman Podcast Canada 6/24/14
Emergency Medicine Cases Best Case Ever 25 Rob Rogers on Social Media in EM Education Anton Helman Podcast Canada 6/18/14
Ultrasound Podcast Social Media and Medical Education. #FOAMED talk from #ACEP13 Matt Dawson Podcast USA 5/14/14
ACEP Now Tweets from Emergency Medicine-related Conferences Relay Latest Research About Social Media and Critical Care, Resuscitation Procedures, Ultrasounds, and Toxicology Jeremy Faust Blog USA 5/7/14
The Skeptics Guide to Emergency Medicine Tiny Bubbles (#FOAMed and #MedEd) Ken Milne Podcast Canada 4/25/14
Emergency Physicians Monthly PRO/CON: Why #FOAMed is NOT Essential to EM Education Nicholas Genes Blog USA 4/7/14
Emergency Physicians Monthly
PRO/CON: Why #FOAMed is Essential to EM Education
Joe Lex Blog USA 4/7/14
AAEM/RSA Blog FOAM — This is not the future of medicine, it is medical education NOW! Meaghan Mercer Blog USA 7/23/13
Emergency Medicine News News: How Twitter Can Save a Life Paul Bufano Open Access Journal USA 4/12/13
FOAMed appeal is simple: Get more, pay nothing
Jeremy Faust Blog USA 2/1/13
Emergency Medicine News Breaking News: Don’t Call It Social Media: FOAM and the Future of Medical Education Gina Shaw Open Access Journal USA 2/1/13
Academic Life in Emergency Medicine Lost in translation: What counts as asynchronous learning? Nikita Joshi Blog USA 1/18/13


Featured Discussion Questions

The ALiEM team poses the following questions to explore current practices with social media and medical education, and perceptions about the benefits and drawbacks of this educational modality. If you have additional questions, feel free to pose them!

  • Q1. Educators: What are the biggest barriers for educators and how to overcome them?
  • Q2. Learners: How do we engage learners once the tech-innovation is employed? If you build it, they won’t necessarily come!
  • Q3. Programs: What are other examples of actual or potential innovations in GME that wasn’t described in the paper?

Please participate in the discussion by answering either on the ALiEM blog comments below or by tweeting us using the hashtag #ALiEMRP. Please denote the question you are responding to by starting your reply with Q1, Q2, or Q3.

Best Blog and Tweet

NEW! Contest for Best Blog Comment and Tweet

Thanks to Dr. Henry Woo and his colleagues in the Twitter-based International Urology Journal Club series (#urojc) hosted by @IUroJC, we are also implementing a contest for the Best Blog Quote and Best Tweet. What, emergency physicians – competitive? No… The winners will be announced in our Annals of EM publication curating this discussion.

Disclaimer: We reserve the right to use any and all tweets to #ALiEMRP and comments below in a commentary piece for an Annals of Emergency Medicine publication as a curated conclusion piece for this Resident’s Perspective publication. Your comments will be attributed, and we thank-you in advance for your contributions.

Bryan D. Hayes, PharmD, FAACT, FASHP

Bryan D. Hayes, PharmD, FAACT, FASHP

Leadership Team, ALiEM
Creator and Lead Editor, Capsules series, ALiEMU
Attending Pharmacist, EM and Toxicology, MGH
Assistant Professor of EM, Harvard Medical School
Bryan D. Hayes, PharmD, FAACT, FASHP


EM Pharmacist & Toxicologist @MassGeneralEM | Asst Prof @HarvardMed/@EMRES_MGHBWH | @ALiEMteam leadership | Capsules creator, ALiEMU | President, ABAT | #FOAMed
Scott Kobner
ALiEM New Submissions Editor Medical Student New York University School of Medicine 2014-15 ALiEM-EMRA Social Media and Digital Scholarship Fellow
Scott Kobner


EM PGY2 at LAC+USC interested in medical education, clinical communication. All views are my own. #FOAMed