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Otolaryngology Medical Student Course Offerings

Find course descriptions and other information including grading and rotation locations for the various M3 and M4 course options we offer.

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M4 Otolaryngology Acting Internship - OTOL D4609

This course aims to provide senior medical students with the opportunity to acquire core knowledge and the basic interviewing and technical skills required by a graduate physician for recognizing diagnosis and initiating management of Ear, Nose and Throat disorders. Additionally students will actively participate and interact as members of a medical/surgical care team under close supervision of residents and attending physicians to foster the development of professionalism in their approach to patient care and medical management.

Students enrolled in the course typically spend two weeks on the Froedtert otolaryngology service and two weeks on the CW otolaryngology service. If a large number of otolaryngology medical students are enrolled in our courses at the time, the VA service may be assigned for a portion of the rotation to ensure an optimal experience for all learners.

If you have a strong preference regarding where you would like to rotate (Froedtert, VA, CW or a combination), please email Alyssa at alschwab@mcw.edu. We will do our very best to accommodate your wishes but cannot make any guarantees.

 Students taking this course will be asked to submit 4 H+Ps and give a 10 minute final oral presentation. Grades are based on a combination of professionalism, student and faculty evaluations, final presentation grade, and completion of 4 H+Ps. 

M4 Otolaryngology Elective - OTOL D4163

This course will provide students with the opportunity to become familiar with the broad scope of the otolaryngology practice and its application to patient care.  Additionally students will actively participate and interact as a member of the medical/surgical team in the outpatient clinic, operating room, inpatient ward and educational conferences. 

Students enrolled in this course typically spend two weeks on the Froedtert otolaryngology service and two weeks on the CW service. If a large number of otolaryngology medical students are enrolled in our courses at the time, the VA service may be assigned for a portion of the rotation to ensure an optimal experience for all learners.

If you have a strong preference regarding where you would like to rotate (Froedtert, VA, CW or a combination), please email Alyssa at alschwab@mcw.edu. We will do our very best to accommodate your wishes but cannot make any guarantees.

 Students taking this course will be asked to submit 4 H+Ps and give a 10 minute final oral presentation. Grades are based on a combination of professionalism, student and faculty evaluations, final presentation grade, and completion of 4 H+Ps. 

M4 Pediatric Otolaryngology Acting Internship - OTOL D4617

This course is designed to orient senior medical students with pediatric otolaryngology head and neck examination, common inpatient and outpatient pathology and diagnosis and treatment. On this rotation students will learn a variety of otolaryngologic conditions and procedures including, but not limited to allergic rhinitis, hearing loss screening, chronic ear infections, epistaxis, routine care for the child with a tracheostomy, airway obstruction, head and neck masses, sleep apnea and cholesteatoma.  This course is highly recommended for students interested in family medicine or pediatrics.

Students enrolled in this course will spend all four weeks at CW, therefore the vast majority of their work will be with a pediatric population.

Students taking this course will be asked to submit 4 H+Ps and give a 10 minute final oral presentation. Grades are based on a combination of professionalism, student and faculty evaluations, final presentation grade, and completion of 4 H+Ps.

M3 Otolaryngology Elective - OTOL D3321

This course will provide exposure to and clinical experience within the specialty of otolaryngology head and neck surgery. Students will acquire basic knowledge and skills applicable to the history and physical exam and familiarity with ENT surgical interventions and management.

Students enrolled in this course typically spend two weeks on the Froedtert otolaryngology service and two weeks on the CW service. If a large number of otolaryngology medical students are enrolled in our courses at the time, the VA service may be assigned for a portion of the rotation to ensure an optimal experience for all learners.

If you have a strong preference regarding where you would like to rotate (Froedtert, VA, CW or a combination), please email Alyssa at alschwab@mcw.edu. We will do our very best to accommodate your wishes but cannot make any guarantees.

 Students taking this course will be asked to submit 4 H+Ps and give a 10 minute oral final presentation. Grades are based on a combination of professionalism, student and faculty evaluations, final presentation grade, and completion of 4 H+Ps. 

M3 2 week Discovery Course Options - OTOL D3360 (CW), OTOL D3366 (FH), OTOL D3372 (VA)

The Discovery Courses aim to provide students with an introduction to the field of otolaryngology at the location and patient population of their choice. 

Students are graded on a pass or fail basis based on professionalism and participation and are not expected to give a presentation or submit H+Ps.

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Baby Physician F Ear Exam

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Physician F Adolescent Patient F Throat Exam

Student Requirements and Coursework

Please find information regarding coursework requirements and student expectations for your time on the otolaryngology service. 

4 week Rotations

4 week Rotations

Prior to beginning the rotation, students will receive a rotation schedule via email that will include service assignments, chief resident information and the date and time of any required student meetings such as orientation, professor rounds, teaching sessions. etc. Additionally students are required to attend the Tuesday afternoon education conferences that begin at 3 pm in the HUB 4520.

 As members of the team, students are generally expected to be at the hospital from around 7 am - 6 pm (depending on the workload that day) in business professional attire. The chief residents run the service and will provide students with specific details of when/where to report each day.

Near the end of the rotation, 4-week students are required to give a ten minute oral presentation and submit 4 H&Ps. More information on these requirements can be found below under final presentation expectations and H&P writing and tips. 

2 week Rotations

2 week Rotations

Prior to beginning the rotation, students will receive a rotation schedule via email that will include service assignments, chief resident information and the date and time of any required student meetings such as orientation, professor rounds, teaching sessions. etc. Additionally students are required to attend the Tuesday afternoon education conferences that begin at 3 pm in the HUB 4520.

 As members of the team, students are generally expected to be at the hospital from around 7 am - 6 pm (depending on the workload that day) in business professional attire. The chief residents run the service and will provide students with specific details of when/where to report each day.

As an exploratory elective, there is no required coursework and students are graded on participation and professionalism. 

Information for Otolaryngology Medical Students currently on Rotation

Find information regarding expectations, grades, evaluations and more for your time on the otolaryngology service.

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Rotation Learning Objectives
  • Gain exposure to the wide range of normal and abnormal conditions evaluated and treated by otolaryngologists and allied professionals, esp. audiologists and speech/language pathologists.
  • Learn how to take a focused history from patients with otolaryngologic disorders.
  • Master the skills necessary to perform the basic ear, nose, throat (aka “head and neck”) physical exam.
  • Be able to recognize ENT-specific conditions/disorders that are potentially life-threatening and require immediate attention (or referral), and to distinguish the former from less severe, more elective patient issues.
  • Become familiar with the scope of practice of otolaryngology and the services this specialty can provide to you and your patients.
Conference Attendance and Professor Rounds
Generally all students are required to be at Grand Rounds, M&M and resident teaching conferences on Tuesday afternoons beginning at 3 pm in the Hub 4520. Additionally attendance is required at any orientation or professor rounds listed on the rotation schedule.
Grading Details

4 - week Courses

Grades are based on a combination of the final presentation grade, completion of 4 H&Ps and Oasis evaluations completed by the residents, two faculty mentors and the Course Director. The grading scale is as follows:

Honors: 88 & above
High Pass: 75-87
Pass: 60-74
Low Pass: 55-59
Fail: 54 or below

2 - week Courses

Students receive either a pass or fail grade which is based on participation and professionalism.

Grades are typically posted in Oasis about four weeks after completing the rotation. Please remember to complete the Oasis course evaluation as this must be done before any comments are released.

Student Call Expectations

As a surgical specialty, taking call is a part of the experience and provides many learning opportunities. Students pursuing Otolaryngology as their chosen field and enrolled in a 4-week course will be assigned one Saturday of call during a week when ENT is also covering facial trauma call. The expectation is that the student(s) come in to the hospital to round with the residents in the morning at the minimum and then possibly stay under the direction of the on-call resident depending on what is going on that day. 

Students not pursuing a career path in Otolaryngology are not expected or required to take call, but may be asked to stay for after hour consults with the resident team.  

Final Presentation Expectations

10-minute oral final presentation near the end of the rotation is expected for all 4-week students – see rotation schedule for date and time. If we have a large number of rotating students on service, we may defer M3 presentations at the discretion of the course directors due to time constraints. Two week students are NOT expected to present, but are required to attend if presentations fall during their time on service. 

Final presentations are graded on content, delivery, knowledge of the subject matter, and use of the primary literature. Other grading factors include the quality of slides, organization, and delivery style.

When deciding on a topic, it's recommended to discuss your idea(s) with the Course Director to ensure the topic is not too broad. View past presentation topic examples (PDF). 

Students typically present in person from a conference room in the Hub, but may choose to present virtually. The Course Directors, other faculty and residents/fellows will be in attendance. The most common format is a PowerPoint presentation. 

Please email Alyssa your topic at least two days before the presentation(s) so it can be included in the announcement. 

Learning Resources and Recommended Readings

ENT exam video series - The 4-episode ENT Exam Video Series℠ provides an overview of a thorough examination of the ear, oral cavity, face, nose, neck, nasopharynx, and larynx. Images and video of normal anatomy, normal variances, and common abnormalities have been added to enhance the learning experience. 

eBooks - The American Academy of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery Foundation offers a number of eBooks in a versatile eReader format as education resources for otolaryngologists, residents, medical students, and other healthcare professionals.

Journals, Abstracts, and Guidelines - Explore a database of a wide variety of resources on ENT related topics.

The Bulletin - The official member magazine of the American Academy of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery.

AAO-HNS - A database of resources from the American Academy of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery. 

OTOSource -  single source online repository for otolaryngology education.

COCLIA - Comprehensive Otolaryngologic Curriculum Learning through Interactive Approach (COCLIA).

Faculty Mentors
Each student is assigned one-two faculty mentors and assignments are noted on the rotation schedule. The expectation is that each student attend one clinic and one OR per week with their faculty mentor. The chief residents are aware of this requirement and will create your daily assignments accordingly. Students are encouraged to reach out to their mentors via email to request a meeting if desired (again this is NOT required). Faculty mentors are asked to complete an evaluation on their assigned student(s) at the end of the rotation.
H&P Writing and Tips

All 4-week students are required to submit 4 H+Ps by the end of the rotation. These can be copy and pasted into the body of an email or sent in a word document to alschwab@mcw.edu. These are not graded, but are tracked for completion.

H&P writing tips provided by Dr. Sophie Shay:

  • Be concise.
  • Your HPI should include the core elements of descriptive terms regarding the chief complaint:
    Onset, Location, Duration, Characteristics, Aggravating/Alleviating factors, Related symptoms, Treatments, and Significance.
  • Include a thorough relevant history (medical, surgical, medications, allergies, family, and social).
  • Include relevant points from a review of systems.
  • A thorough Head and Neck physical examination.
  • A concise assessment with a reasonable differential diagnosis
  • A clear plan for next steps of management and/or workup.

Visiting Student Information

Doing an away, one month elective rotation at MCW is a great way to learn more about our residency program, and get to know our residents and faculty. Our department typically hosts one - two visiting students during July, August, September and October. Applications are processed through VSLO and the office of the Registrar. 

Additional Information for Visiting Students on rotation or planning to be. 

All visiting students will need an MCW badge, Froedtert Hospital badge and a Children's WI badge in addition to Epic access at both Froedtert Hospital and Children's WI. Here you will find information on how to obtain badges and computer access.  

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How to obtain a Froedtert Hospital Badge:

The Froedtert badge is requested by Alyssa. To pick up a Froedtert ID Badge, please stop by the Froedtert Hospital badge window located across from the B elevators on the 1st floor as early as three business days before the rotation start date. Please print this two page form (PDF) and fill in what you can prior to arriving (portions have already been filled in for you).

  • The cost of a Froedtert ID badge is $5. Cash or card is accepted. 

Scrub credits will be automatically added to the badge however you will need to call in your size preference (S, M, L, XL) to (414) 805-5037 and will be asked to provide your name and the first 5 digits on the back of your badge. Scrub machines are located in multiple locations: on the 4th floor bridge between main hospital and CFAC building, 3rd floor locker room outside pre-op area, Lower level alcove by “old ORs,” or 3rd floor locker room by the Pavilion (near the ERU area). Feel free to ask a staff member for assistance if needed. 

How to obtain an MCW badge: 

The MCW badge is requested by Alyssa and can be picked up by the student as early as three business days before the rotation start date by stopping by the MCW Public Safety office which is in MCW's medical education building on the first floor near the gift shop (address: 8701 Watertown Plank Rd.). At this office, students will also be given parking instructions. The hours for the MCW Public Safety Badge office are:

Monday - 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Tuesday - 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Wednesday - 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Thursday - 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Friday - By Appointment Only

    • There is no cost for this badge.
    • You will need it to be able to enter and pass through the Hub.
    • Please wear at all times when you are on campus.
How to obtain a Children's WI (CW) badge:

CW rotators should stop by the physicians support office on the 1st floor of Children’s Wisconsin (CW) for badge/computer log in/EPIC log in/scrub access prior or on your first day even if you are not rotating on the CW service first. The physician support office staff will have you test your Epic log in and take your photo for the ID badge. After this is done, please remember to stop by CW security on the first floor near the main entrance of the hospital to pick up your badge.

For scrub access: please stop by the 3rd floor OR front desk (off the S elevators) and ask for scrub access to be added to your CW badge for your upcoming ENT rotation. Scrub machines are located outside the 4th floor ORs and your CW badge also serves as the access card. Please feel free to ask a staff member for assistance if needed. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can my rotation assignments be changed (for example I would like to rotate at CW instead of the VA)?

    We do our best to accommodate all requests, but do need to keep the services balanced to prevent too many students on a particular service at one time. If you would like to request a change to your rotation assignment, please email Alyssa for consideration. 

  • If I have an evaluation due for a resident I did not work with, can it be deleted?

    Yes, if you have open evaluations and you did not work with the resident or faculty member, please let Alyssa know so the evaluation can be deleted. We do ask that all students complete at least a total of three evaluations in Oasis and this can be on residents, faculty, or a combination. 

  • Can I request an excused absence?

    If you need to request an excused absence for a personal obligation or education related commitment, please email your request to Alyssa at least a week in advance if possible. We are usually able to honor requests without requiring make up days as long as the request is legitimate. 

  • What format should my H+Ps be sent in?

    Please send these to Alyssa via email using a Microsoft Word document or copying and pasting to the body of an email. 

  • Can I choose a different faculty mentor because I did not get a chance to work with the one I was assigned to?

    Yes, please let Alyssa know if this happens so that evaluations can be changed accordingly. We do however encourage you to try to work with your mentor as much as possible so that adequate time is spent to provide a detailed evaluation. 

  • Can a spot be opened if the slots for the enrollment period I'm interested in are taken?

    No we unfortunately cannot add spots to our course enrollment slots as these are set according to what the services can handle. We do encourage students to check back because drops may occur throughout the year. We also encourage looking into our two week course offerings if you are an M3  or the 4 week electives if you are an M4 as these are great alternative options. 

  • Is there a format that should be followed for the H+Ps? 

    There is no specific format to follow, but tips for writing an H+P is available to reference above (scroll up). 

Department Contacts

Otolaryngology Medical Student Course Directors and Coordinator Information

Jonathan Bock, MD

Course Director

Sophie Shay, MD

Pediatric Otolaryngology Course Director

Alyssa Schwab

Otolaryngology Medical Student Coordinator