Art in medicine programs: Student, academic, and practitioner perspectives

Project Details


Art gallery visits in medical courses have been occurring for at least 20 years, particularly in North America and Britain. These programs usually focus on either the close observation of the art as a way of improving the clinical observation skills of participants or on the students’ emotional and empathic response to the art as a way of connecting them to the situations they witness in their clinical experiences (1). Many of the programs described are pilot programs or electives so not all students in a course get these experiences.

In the Melbourne MD all students in third year in 2015 had an art gallery experience provided in their teaching program. This research study aims to gain the views of the Melbourne MD students who attended the integrated art programs in the year following their experience, as well as interviewing academics and practitioners (from both medicine and art) to gain their ideas for the benefits of such programs.


  • Eleanor Flynn, Associate Professor Department of Medical Education
  • Heather Gaunt, Curator of Academic Programs, Potter Art Museum

Research Publications

Harris, A, Flynn, E (2016): Medical education of attention: A qualitative study of learning to listen to sound, Medical Teacher, DOI:10:1080/0142159X.2016.1231916

Research Group

Curriculum, Assessment and Evaluation

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

Medical Education

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