Medical Education banner Click here for the Medical Education Home Page Click here for the UC Irvine Home Page Click here for the School of Medicine Home Page

Research Opportunities

699E Research Elective in
Medical Humanities and Social Sciences

Johanna Shapiro, Ph.D.

Course Description:
Medical Humanities encompass a broad range of subjects and activities, including history, anthropology, and literature.  This elective provides an opportunity for students to explore and engage in analysis of various clinical issues in medicine through the development of a specific medical humanities-based project related to the art of medicine.

Course Objectives:  At the end of this rotation the student will:
  • Participate in a meaningful way in the implementation and completion of a humanities creative project/research project related to the art of medicine
  • Understand and be able to state the intellectual basis for developing this humanities project as an aspect of medical education
  • Complete a written document describing the goals and outcomes of the project
  • Identify an appropriate mentor, and expert on the topic of choice, who can evaluate and guide the student's work



David Cheng – “Narratives of Patient Pain and Physician Responses in a Geriatric Population”


Christina Umber – “Emotional Coping of Medical Students”
Lauren Ross – "Value, Dysmenorrhea and  the Definition of Disease."
Jennifer Alloo – "Narrative Medicine: A Medical Student’s Experiment in Becoming a Reflective Doctor."
Christina Hamilton – “The Tree of Medicine: Tibetan Health Beliefs”
Jonathan Kirsten – “Success, Suffering, and Stigma Within the Model Minority”
Kristina Coale – “The Humanity of Curative Care and Palliative Care in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit”
Marco Angulo -  "Lost Talent? MCAT and GPA Thresholds for Prediction of Medical School Success"
Warren Davis – “Clinical Empathy: Can It Be Taught?”


Katherine Homann – “How Technology Will Shape the Future of Emergency Medicine."
Gunjan Christensen – Educational/health programs serving HIV+ patients in India
Beverly Cho – Medical Readers Theater: An Innovative Method for Educating Medical Students about Psychosocial Aspects of Aging and Healthcare
Bryan Ellerson – Divergent Assumptions Underlying Healthcare Models: A Cross-Cultural Comparison
John Rose – Health Disparities in the OR
Renzo Cardena – Essentials of Public Health
Esmeralda Moran – Health Promotion


Eva Boyd - Medical Students and International Volunteering: What We Can Give and What We Can Take Away

Akta Patel - Grey’s Anatomy:  Dissecting the Popular Medical Drama
Carl Smith – Curanderismo in the U.S.
Darren Raphael - Hispanic Health and Health Care Access Disparities: A Photographic Journey
Cristian Jivcu - Trained Incapacity and Occupational Psychosis in the Medical Profession
Polly Sacks – Personal and Professional Reflections on Hurricane Katrina

Sayeh Beheshti - Personal and Societal Views of Illness Described in Selected 19th and 20th Century Fiction
Brenda Jensen - Effects and Coping Styles of Parents of Children with Developmental Disabilities.
Cyrus Khaledy - Analysis of Children’s Drawing for a Possible Early Marker of Abuse
Gail Ryan – A Doctor’s Diary: A Comic Strip Approach to Death and Dying


Amir Bernaba - How Heavy Metal and Hard Rock Reinforce and Challenge Societal Paradigms of Loss and Restitution in Relation to Illness, Abuse, and Medical Intervention
Elena Ruiz – Quinceanera: Exploration of Physician Emotional Caring and Connection with Pediatric Patients
Jade Jeng - Max and the Mission: Invisible! (a training manual for pediatric MRI)
Polly Niravath – Clinical Distance vs. Emotional Involvement: A Closer Look at the Oncologist’s Role in Patient Care

Grainne McEvoy - Medicine and the Poetry of Edward Taylor

UC Medical Humanities Consortium Research Stipends

Because of our affiliation with the UC Medical Humanities Consortium, we are able to offer a small number of summer stipend awards for 1st year medical students to support medical-humanities related research.

Nina Narasimhalu – “Superimposing Shakespeare on Modern Medicine: How Physicians Continually Find Meaning and Inspiration in their Work”

Stephanie Le – “Cultural Aspects of the Patient-Doctor Relationship in a Vietnamese Population” 
Laura Doan – “Changes in Medicine from the 1920’s to Today: Exploring the Life Story Narratives of Patients Age 65 and Over”
David Cheng – “Perceptions of Physicians Attitudes toward Pain Symptoms in a Geriatric Population”