Sophistry, the Sophists and modern medical education

MacSuibhne, S. P. (2010) Sophistry, the Sophists and modern medical education. Medical Teacher, 32 (1). pp. 71-75. ISSN 0142159X (ISSN)

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Abstract

The term 'sophist' has become a term of intellectual abuse in both general discourse and that of educational theory. However the actual thought of the fifth century BC Athenian-based philosophers who were the original Sophists was very different from the caricature. In this essay, I draw parallels between trends in modern medical educational practice and the thought of the Sophists. Specific areas discussed are the professionalisation of medical education, the teaching of higher-order characterological attributes such as personal development skills, and evidence-based medical education. Using the specific example of the Sophist Protagoras, it is argued that the Sophists were precursors of philosophical approaches and practices of enquiry underlying modern medical education. © 2010 Informa UK Ltd All rights reserved.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Export Date: 23 February 2015; CODEN: MEDTD; Correspondence Address: MacSuibhne, S. P.; Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health Research, University College Dublin, St Vincents University Hospital, Elm Park, Dublin 4, Ireland; email: seamus.macsuibhne@ucd.ie; References: Boyles, D.R., (1996) Sophistry, Dialectic, and Teacher Education: A Reinterpretation of Plato's Meno. Philosophy of Education, pp. 102-109. , http://www.ed.uiuc.edu/EPS/PES-Yearbook/96_docs/boyles.html, [Published 1996]. Available from; Dearing, R., (1997) Higher Education in the Learning Society: National Committee of Inquiry into Higher Education, , London: HMSO; De Romilly, J., (2002) The Great Sophists in Periclean Athens, , Translated by Janet Lloyd. Oxford: Clarendon Press; Eckles, R.E., Meslin, E.M., Gaffney, M., Helft, P.R., Medical ethics education: Where are we? Where should we be going? A review (2005) Acad Med, 80 (12), pp. 1143-1152; Feynman, R., Cargo cult science (1974) Surely you'Re Joking, Mr. Feynman: Adventures of A Curious Character, , Hutchings E, editor. New York: W W Norton; Furedy, J.J., Furedy, C., Socratic versus Sophistic strains in the teaching of undergraduate psychology: Implicit conflicts made explicit (1982) Teach Psych, 9 (1), pp. 14-19; Furedy, J.J., Furedy, C., On strengthening the Socratic strain in higher education (1986) Aust J Educ, 30 (3), pp. 241-255; Glick, S.M., The teaching of medical ethics to medical students (1994) J Med Ethics, 29, pp. 239-243; Hall, T., Sophistry and wisdom in Plato's Meno (1996) Philosophy of Education, , http://www.ed.uiuc.edu/EPS/PESYearbook/96_docs/hall.html, Published. Available from; Harden, R.M., Crosby, J.R., Davis, M.H., AMEE Guide No.14 Outcomebased education: Part 1. An introduction to outcome-based education (1999) Med Teach, 21, pp. 7-14; Harden, R.M., Lilley, P.M., Best evidence medical education: The simple truth (2000) Med Teach, 22 (2), pp. 117-119; Kerferd, G.B., (1981) The Sophistic Movement, , Cambridge: Cambridge University Press; Kreeft, P., (2002) Philosophy 101 by Socrates: An Introduction to Philosophy Via Plato's Apology, , New York: Ignatius Press; Lavery, J., Protagoras (2008) The Sophists: An Introduction, pp. 30-44. , O'Grady P, editor. London: Duckworth; O'Grady, P.F., What is a sophist? (2008) The Sophists: An Introduction, pp. 9-20. , O'Grady P, editor. London: Duckworth; Pellegrino, E.D., Thomasina, D.C., (1993) The Virtues in Medical Practice, , New York: Oxford University Press; Peterson, S., Time for evidence based medical education: Tomorrow's doctors need informed educators not amateur tutors (1999) BMJ, 318, pp. 1223-1224; Pugsley, L., Brigley, S., Allery, L., MacDonald, J., Making a difference: Researching masters and doctoral research programmes in medical education (2008) Med Educ, 42, pp. 157-163; Sidgwick, H., The sophists (1872) J Philol, 4, pp. 288-307; Sommerstein, A.H., (1973) Aristophanes Lysistrata and Other Plays (Includes the Clouds), , Translation. Harmondsworth: Penguin Classics; Stabile, D.R., (2007) Economics, Competition and Academia: An Intellectual History of Sophism Versus Virtue, , Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar; Vellacott, P., (1963) Euripides' Hecabe, , Translation. Harmondsworth: Penguin Classics; Walls, D., McAleer, S., Teaching the consultant teachers: Identifying the core content (2000) Med Educ, 34, pp. 131-138; Waterfield, R., (2000) The First Philosophers: The Presocratics and Sophists, , Oxford: Oxford University Press
Uncontrolled Keywords: article; medical education; philosophy; professional competence; Education, Medical
Depositing User: National Forum
Date Deposited: 04 Dec 2015 08:25
Last Modified: 04 Dec 2015 08:35
URI: http://eprints.teachingandlearning.ie/id/eprint/2829

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