History of medicine

Requirements: attendance (max. 2 absences), a final take-home essay,
Basic Text: E. H. Ackerknecht, M.D., A Short History of Medicine, revised edition, The Johns
Hopkins University Press 1982
Essay Writing Guidelines
Topic: Explain what you think is one of the most important intellectual achievements in the
history of medicine. An intellectual achievement is a change in the way of thinking about
medicine in general or about an aspect of it (e.g. diagnosis, teaching method). The importance
of the change can be measured by the degree to which medicine was transformed to become
more effective in treatment and/or diagnosis.
Begin with an initial research, and then decide what to write on. Use Ackerknecht’s textbook as
starting point, your class notes and other historical-medical resources. Document your claims
and data you cite by providing references to the sources you use.
Writing guidelines:
1. Plan your paper before you write. It should provide an argument. Arguments have structure.
2. In the opening paragraph(s)
a. state clearly the thesis you want to defend,
b. explain why your thesis is important (helps understand some aspects of medicine
and/or its present form, helps reveal assumptions on which the practice of medicine
is based, provides a new perspective on medicine or some aspects of individual
and/or social life, etc.),

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