400-Level Medical Technology: Basic Hematology (Writing Intensive)

MEDT 451

Course Syllabus

This is an annotated writing-intensive course syllabus: the Mnoa Writing Program has added annotations in the right margin and bold green font in the syllabus to highlight relevant passages. We place this annotated syllabus and others on our website to help teachers understand different ways of incorporating writing-intensive hallmarks into the syllabus and course.

MEDT 451
 Revised 6/2004
Instructor: Dick Teshima, Medical Technology, School of Medicine
Goals: Many hematological topics have already been covered in previous courses (MEDT 251, 301, 302, 366), as well as in other related courses (biochemistry, anatomy, physiology). We will concentrate on the fundamental concepts and principles of laboratory procedures in this course which help identify or classify hematologic disorders. Some special laboratory procedures will also be introduced. Student is expected to learn to organize the clinical and laboratory data in a meaningful way, suggest appropriate set of laboratory tests and recognize some potential pitfalls in these procedures.
Papers: Completion of tasks in a timely manner is essential for medical technologists. All papers (lab worksheet, assignments, exams, etc.) must be turned in on time. Late paper, if accepted, will be given half credit.
Honorable conduct: Student will strictly observe honorable and professional conduct appropriate as medical technology students at all times. Please refer to UHM Student Conduct Code, Academic Grievance Procedure (see UHM General Information Catalog), and JABSOM Policy on Academic Misconduct in the Division office.
Communications: Everyone should have access to email through UH Unix or a personal server. This is an efficient mode to keep in touch. A web conference and BB system is also available for this class. Log on to Nicenet at www.nicenet.org and join the MEDT 451 class by entering the class key. Input the requested information so that we know you have joined the class successfully. Key words, exam grids, and other information are posted in the Document area. Relevant links, including a link to Med Tech Tutor, are found in the Link Share area. Keep updated by visiting this site periodically.
UHM Division of Medical Technology: The Division of Medical Technology belongs to the Department of Allied Medical Sciences, John A. Bums School of Medicine, College of Health Sciences and Social Welfare. For more information, please visit us at Biomedical Sciences Building room C-206, or visit our Web site at www.hawaii.edu/medtech/Medtech.html.
Case study presentations
You have collected hematology case study materials from professional journals during MEDT 366 rotation. Analysis of the case helps you to understand the disease process and the role of the hematology laboratory in diagnosis and treatment of the disease. Please prepare your case for a presentation with the following information.

  1. One or two objectives written in an acceptable format with condition, performance term and criterion measure. The presentation is an exercise in education methodology (i.e., you are the teacher).
  2. Presentation method will be one in which participants are encouraged to think critically and apply previously learned concepts; avoid unidirectional lectures. Try to think of some ways to engage the class into active learning. See MEDT 366 syllabus for examples.
  3. Your presentation should be about 15 minutes in length including a question and discussion period. You may use any tools or media that will enhance your presentation (e.g., overhead, slide projectors, posters, handouts). Please check with the instructor ahead of time if you require major equipment.


  1. After the presentation, ask the participants to write summaries of the case in their own words. They are to be submitted to you by the end of the week; grade them (including appropriate comments) and give to the instructor for redistribution.
  2. Prepare a short evaluation, not more than 3 pages, within one week after the presentation. This is a part of the Wl requirement. The paper should discuss
  • the process of data gathering and preparation,
  • the delivery of your presentation,
  • participant performance during presentation,
  • outcome of their assignments (summary papers), and
  • additional thoughts about the teaching method used.
  1. Evaluation of your presentation will be based on:
  • Content: Are your materials relevant to the class? Were your educational objectives fulfilled? Were the tools you used appropriate?
  • Delivery: Were you able to present your materials within the time limit (15 min.)? Was your audience attentive and interested?
  • Evaluation: Were your classmates able to identify the disease? What were their levels of comprehension? Were their supportive arguments plausible? Is your self-evaluation appropriate and reasonable?

Syllabus address Hallmark 1: the course uses writing to promote the learning of course content.
Instructor provides guidelines for the writing assignment.

  1. Library research: Using the references available in the libraries, write a summary paper (not more than 5 pages) about the hematologic condition of your case study: what it is, how it is classified, important clinical and laboratory parameters, etc. Are there any unusual features about your case? Try to cite the most recent publication (e.g.. professional journal articles) related to your case. This is also a Wl requirement.

Syllabus address Hallmark 1: writing promotes the learning of course content. The instructor clearly states that students should summarize in their short paper and use library resources.

Writing Intensive Course (Wl)
This course has been designated Wl. Writing is a kind of learning tool, like listening, reading, observing and experimenting. Various forms of writing will be used:

Instructor helps students understand that writing is a tool for learning in addition to a tool for communication.

  1. Case Study Report: Not more than 5 pages in length, but at least one draft must be reviewed with the instructor. Research additional articles for relevant information to be included in your discussions. Follow the generally accepted format of scientific writing for publication. The final report is due one week after the presentation.
  2. Case Study Presentation Evaluation: Not more than 3 pages. This is an evaluation of yourself as well as audience comprehension. Due one week after the presentation.
  3. Weekly Summary: Summarize what you have learned each week in your own words. Be concise (about one page) and focus on the main theme--you can insert the details later. These will be helpful when you are reviewing for an exam.
  4. Take Home Exams: You will be asked to describe important concepts in narrative format. Answers should be concise (scientific writing) but complete. Use of specific examples may be helpful. Compare and contrast related concepts.
  5. Free Writings: There may be several short, ungraded, free writing sessions to probe your understanding of the concepts and principles.

 Papers will be graded based on the following general criteria:

  1. Thoroughness and depth of analysis (40%)
  2. Relevance or appropriateness of contents (20%)
  3. Organized and logical presentation (20%)
  4. Clear and concise writing (20%)

Grading will be based on both summative (e.g., exams) and formative (e.g., in-class observation) evaluations of your progress. Remember, an MEDT courses can be repeated only once.
I. Cognitive Domain

Midterm Exam 10%
Final Exam 20%
Unknowns   5%
Take Home Exams  10%
WI papers 5%

II. Psychomotor Domain

Lab exercises   20%
Midterm Lab Exam 10%
Final Lab Exam 10%

III. Affective Domain 10%
The following objectives cover the essential topic areas. They are your learning guides and are also used to construct the exams. You should try to exceed the stated level of competency.

  1. From memory, student will describe the normal and abnormal hematopoietic precursor cells in terms of nuclear and cytoplasmic characteristics. and other unique features of the cells, using proper terminology. (Analysis)
  2. Based on a given set of clinical and laboratory data, student will calculate parameters (e.g., indices, correction) and point out significant findings which will help to identify the disorders discussed in class. (Analysis)
  3. Based on discussions and demonstrations, student will summarize the principles of the selected hematologic tests by stating specimen requirement, reviewing the procedure and explaining how to interpret results. These procedures include basic tests (e.g., CBC, relic count, ESR) and special tests (e.g., bone marrow analysis, cytochemical stains, osmotic fragility, G6PD). (Analysis)
  4. Given photomicrographs or actual examples, student will identify the cells (e.g., atypical lymphocytes, leukemic cells, congenital leukocyte disorders) which contain characteristic features discussed in class and laboratory sessions, using acceptable nomenclature. (Application)
  5. Given characteristic cytochemical reactions of leukemic cells, student will distinguish lymphocytic from non-lymphocytic leukemia. In addition. student will predict cytochemical reactions of the cells in given cases when the leukemia classification is known. (Application)
  6. Using clinical and laboratory data with blood and/or bone marrow smears, student will organize the information to support or reject the diagnosis of selected hematologic disorders. Disorders to be recognized and classified include various forms of anemia, reactive or infectious hematologic changes, myeloproliferative disorders (CML, PV, essential thrombocythemia, MMM), ALL, AML, etc. If there is conflicting or unusual information, student will identify them as such and suggest appropriate follow-up procedure which will help to resolve the problem. (Evaluation)


  1. From memory, student will describe hemostasis in terms of functions and roles of plasmatic factors, platelets and vascular integrity, using proper terminology. (Analysis)
  2. From memory, student will describe fibrinolytic system including its activation and formation/nature of fibrin(ogen) degradation products. (Comprehension)
  3. Using laboratory and clinical data, student will organize the information in order to identify the primary cause of hemorrhagic disorders. Disorders to consider include various causes of thrombocytopenia (e.g., consumptive, acute leukemia, ITP, hypersplenism), platelet function disorders (e.g., von Willebrand's disease, Chediak-Higashi syndrome, myeloproliferative disorders), factor deficiencies (e.g., hemophilia, liver disease, vitamin K deficiency) and vascular disorders. (Evaluation)
  4. After demonstration and discussion, student will summarize the principles of hemostasis tests by stating the specimen requirements, reviewing the procedure, and discussing how a particular test can be useful in the evaluation of hemostatic disorders. The list of tests includes major tests (e.g., PT, APTT, fibrinogen. FDP, bleeding time) and special tests (e.g., factor assays, Lee-White clotting time, platelet function tests, protamine sulfate paracoagulation test). (Analysis)

A variety of writing assignments promote the learning of the course content and help students meet the instructor's course objectives.
Some writing assignments (a & d) must adhere to scientific writing guidelines so students learn to write in that manner. At least one assignment (a) has a required draft that receives feedback from the instructor (Hallmark #2).
Some writing assignments are aimed at promoting students' skills in self-evaluation (b), summarizing course content (c), and exploring new ideas (e).
General grading criteria are listed.

Education Methodology

  1. Using references, student will write an educational objective for his/her case study (from MedT 366) presentation which includes "condition," "performance term" and "criterion measure." (Synthesis)
  2. After the presentation, student will evaluate the effectiveness of his/her own presentation in terms of preparation, audience responses and outcome. (Evaluation)

Addresses Hallmark 1

The student is expected to satisfactorily perform the given task within the time limit of each laboratory session. Please refer to the objectives outlined in individual lab exercise for specific items. An evaluation in "unsatisfactory" range must be made-up by completing assigned homeworks.
The following is a list of objectives which will be used to evaluate student's psychomotor skills during the exams. Please note that the lab exams also deal with some cognitive aspects as well.

  1. Given Wright stained blood or bone marrow smears, student will perform differential counts and morphology analyses and report the findings using proper nomenclature:
    a. perform differentials and classify the cells according to a protocol,
    b. evaluate cellular morphology and identify abnormal cells, and
    c. report the findings using acceptable format. (Guided Response)
  2. Interpret the results of special hematology tests performed in the lab exercises (e.g., SickleQuick, FDP, osmotic fragility):
    a. report the results according to given protocol,
    b. identify abnormal results, and
    c. suggest appropriate follow-up tests. (Set)
  3. From memory, student will perform simple routine hematologic procedures on given specimens and report the results within the time limit of the lab period (e.g., reticulocyte count, PT, APTT, differential count, platelet count, bleeding time):
    a. choose and process appropriate specimen, 
    b. prepare reagents, kits, and equipment as instructed, 
    c. perform the test by following proper steps, and
    d. report the results using acceptable format. (Mechanism)
  4. Using the procedure manual, student will perform selected non-routine tests (e.g., osmotic fragility, fibrinogen assay, FDP, cytochemical staining):
    a. choose and process appropriate specimen,
    b, prepare reagents, kits, and equipment as instructed,
    c. perform the test according to instruction, and 
    d. report the results using acceptable format. (Guided Response)

Throughout the semester, student will display professional conduct appropriate as a future medical technologist. A rating scale ranging from 0 point to 10 points will be used to assess performance in the affective domain. Score of 10 means excellent, 8 or 9 means good, 7 means satisfactory, and 0 means unsatisfactory. Please review the examples of acceptable and unacceptable conducts. An evaluation of 0 in any category is not acceptable (i.e., will not pass the course regardless of your exam scores).
1. Positive Approach
Acceptable: performs assigned tasks without irrelevant remarks; willing to accept additional tasks; shows interests in class; tries to apply the knowledge to best of his/her ability in an unusual situation.
Unacceptable: bothers others with negative remarks or excessive complaints; inattentive in class; gives up easily when faced with challenging situations.
2. Reliability and Responsibility
Acceptable: punctual; calls in ahead of class time to report unavoidable absence or tardiness; tries to achieve higher than minimally acceptable level of performance.
Unacceptable: absent or tardy from class without notices; unaccountable during class; does not seek help from peer or instructor when necessary.
3. Flexibility
Acceptable: adapts to different instructors or modes of instructions; accepts changes in work assignments without flustering.
Unacceptable: inappropriately displays frustrations when the "routine" is changed; becomes disorganized and flustered when faced with changes in work assignments.
4. Integrity
Acceptable: adheres to course policy, UHM student conduct code, safety rules; errors are corrected when appropriate; does not attempt tasks beyond his/her capabilities without instructor's consent.
Unacceptable: breaches course policy, UHM student conduct code, safety rules; ignores errors; attempts tasks beyond his/her capabilities without instructor's consent.
5. Ethics
Acceptable: respects patients' (or fellow students') confidentiality of clinical information; acknowledges mistake when pointed out; conducts with professionalism appropriate as future medical technologist.
Unacceptable: discusses patients' (or fellow students') clinical information in public; covers up errors; plagiarizes; ignores or participates in illegal activities.
6 Initiative
Acceptable: uses outside resources in addition to required texts to research relevant information; offers constructive criticism; seeks additional tasks in class when assigned tasks are completed.
Unacceptable: lazy: must be told what to do; unable to use resources other than required texts to further knowledge; refuses to participate in class activities.
7. Interpersonal Relations
Acceptable: creates comfortable communicative atmosphere; able to work cooperatively with others; conveys messages verbally or in writing appropriately; uses the grievance mechanism appropriately.
Unacceptable: creates uncomfortable feeling in others; unable to work with others; displays personal bias inappropriately; interrupts others; unable to verbally communicate or writes illegibly.