Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) upended in-person medical education, relocating many activities online. We designed a completely virtual pathology rotation to replace our traditional visiting rotation.
The virtual away rotation was listed in the Visiting Student Application Service (VSAS) and advertised on social media as well as various medical student mailing lists. Nine students were selected to participate in three month-long rotations. The virtual curriculum mirrored our typical in-person clerkship with didactic lectures and daily signout but also included activities exclusive to the virtual rotation such as digitally scanned slide trays and small-group problem-based learning. Anonymous surveys were conducted in which both participants and instructors rated their experiences.
Postrotation feedback was overwhelmingly positive from both participants and instructors. Students considered virtual slide sessions as the most effective teaching tool and did not feel hindered overall by lack of in-person experiences. Volunteer trainee instructors indicated the experience improved their teaching and diagnostic skills and expressed interest in teaching future virtual courses.
The success of the virtual away rotation raises consideration for applications beyond the pandemic era and may provide a more level playing field for medical students from underrepresented groups.

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