Publication: What Can Medical Education Learn from Facebook and Netflix?

Osmosis Team
Published on May 6, 2014. Updated on Invalid date.

Osmosis has deep roots in scientific research. Our CTO, Ryan, has a PhD in neuroscience, and our CEO, Shiv, wrote a book on the importance of research. Both have a number of peer-reviewed publications, and we're pleased to announce their latest paper this month that describes a vision for the future of medical education technology - a vision that is being turned into reality by Osmosis.

The paper, entitled "What Can Medical Education Learn from Facebook and Netflix," was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine (recent impact factors between 14-17), which is one of the top five most prestigious medical journals worldwide. The title references the fact that the tools that medical students - society's future physicians - use to socialize and watch TV are managed by more sophisticated algorithms than the tools they use to learn medicine.

Osmosis is changing this by incorporating some of the same data-driven techniques and machine learning algorithms that these popular sites use. For example, right now Amazon tells you that customers who bought item x have also bought items a, b, and c. Why doesn't learning medicine work the same way? "Students who found that YouTube animation helpful, also found this video helpful." That's one of the features we're working on at Osmosis, following up on some initial data-driven features such as our exam schedule-based question recommendations.

We encourage you to read the Annals piece and welcome your feedback. What other features do you think would make it easier for you to learn and retain information? Feel free to come up with something novel or refer to your favorite sites, e.g. Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter, etc. Looking forward to reading your comments or emails!