WorldPeopleYesterday I had the pleasure of sharing my thoughts to an enthusiastic crowd of UCSF preclinical medical students on one of my favorite topics “Technology and Social Media in Emergency Medicine”. This is the perfect target audience to teach about developing a workflow habit for keeping up with digital information, since they are only starting to grow their clinical knowledge foundation.

On the morning of my noon talk, I regretted not recruiting some fellow FOAMed (Free Open Access Meducation) supporters to email me their thoughts about why social media is here to stay in medical education. How great would it have been to share the collective thoughts of leaders in this area?

A Live Twitter Experiment

In a moment of inspiration/desperation at 10:50 am, I posted a question to the Twitter community to help me convince the students about the value of FOAMed in medical education. Why should medical students participate? What’s the value?

At 12:40 pm, I started talking about Twitter by showing them what my Twitter feed looks like. I told them that I had posed a question to the Twitter community to share their thoughts about FOAMed, while nervously hoping that at least 1 person had responded. To all of our surprises, there were 20+ replies! Just seeing this scrolling list of thoughtful responses was far more powerful than any motivating words that I could have said to the students about joining the collaborative learning community of FOAMed.

Twitter sells itself when you see it in action. Imagine its potential.

I humbly THANK YOU all for responding and being a part of a virtual worldwide educator panel.

Note: In my powerpoint slide set, I apologize for omitting so many great sites in my EM Starter Kit of #FOAMed resources. For brevity sake, I just picked a few. I did, however, show them the weekly LIFTL Reviews which highlight so many more great resources.


Michelle Lin, MD
ALiEM Founder and CEO
Professor and Digital Innovation Lab Director
Department of Emergency Medicine
University of California, San Francisco
Michelle Lin, MD


Professor of Emerg Med at UCSF-Zuckerberg SF General. ALiEM Founder @aliemteam #PostitPearls at Bio:
Michelle Lin, MD