Department of Neurology & Cognitive Neuroscience

Medical Education


The provision of clinical care in the Department of Neurology and Cognitive Neuroscience provides an opportunity for vertical integration into student education in the baccalaureate-medical degree program at the UMKC School of Medicine. The goal is to have neurology faculty engaged with the Docent Units early in the medical education process with continued exposure in basic neuroscience and in clinical neurology rotations. Refer to the UMKC School of Medicine website for additional detail.


Basic Science Courses

Neurology clinical faculty are actively engaged in teaching Clinical Skills in Neurology, and co-direct the Medical Neuroscience course in Year 3.

  • Clinical Skills Course – Neurology clinical faculty provide lectures on the Neurology Examination, including: The Mental Status Examination in Neurology (Lecture 1), and the Elemental Examination in Neurology (Lecture 2). Our Neurology clinical faculty supervise medical students in the Neurology workshops that are designed to provide direct clinical supervision of the neurological examination in a small group setting.
  • Medical Neuroscience Course – Dr. Jennifer Bickel, Associate Professor of Neurology at Children’s Mercy Hospital, and Dr. Charles Donohoe, Professor and Interim Chair, are Co-Directors in the Medical Neuroscience course. Dr. Kawano and Dr. Gratton also give course lectures.

This course is designed to provide students with detailed knowledge of neuroscience as it relates to the clinical setting. The basic anatomy of the central and peripheral nervous system is covered. This information is integrated into clinical cases that reinforce knowledge and prepare students for clinical rotations in neurology.


Neurology Elective Rotations – Years 3, 4, 5, & 6

We offer several elective rotations in Neurology. Dr. Donohoe supervises medical students in these rotations. Rotations are listed below with a brief description. Additional information can be found on the UMKC School of Medicine website.

  • Neurology Clinical Clerkship – Elective Rotation: this clerkship is approved for students in Years 3-6. Medical students will rotate on both the inpatient consultation service and will participate in the neurology multi-specialty clinic at Truman Medical Center – Hospital Hill. Medical students will be part of the “team” that includes resident physicians and other allied health professionals working under the direction of the Neurology clinical faculty.
  • Neurology Research Course – Elective Rotation: this research rotation was developed for medical students interested in patient-oriented research in clinical neuroscience. Our faculty members are engaged in a variety of research projects and have diverse backgrounds and subspecialty areas of expertise. Information on our faculty can be found in Biographical Sketches in the faculty section of this webpage. Dr. Donohoe works closely with students interested in Neurology research, will help to individually structure this experience, and “mentor” students. Depending on the time-commitment and the level of interest, medical students should be able to co-author a paper with one of our faculty members. The Department also has research faculty members that can “mentor” students. Refer to the Research section of our Department website for additional information.


Resident Medical Education

The Department provides resident education to clinicians in the following areas:

  • Psychiatry Resident Physicians – UMKC Psychiatry residents participate in clinical neurology services in the Center for Neurology and Cognitive Neuroscience at Truman Medical Center – Hospital Hill. These resident physicians are supervised by our Neurology Clinical faculty and participate both in-patient and out-patient care. Residents are supervised by Dr. Gratton.
  • Internal Medicine Resident Physicians – UMKC Internal Medicine resident physicians rotate at Research Medical Center, where they were supervised by Dr. Ahmed, and rotate at Truman Medical Center – Hospital Hill, where they are supervised by Dr. Gratton.
  • Family Medicine Resident Physicians – UMKC Family Medicine resident physicians rotate on the Neurology clinical service at Truman Medical Center – Hospital Hill. These resident physicians are supervised by Dr. Donohoe.
  • Clinical Pharmacology Residents/Fellows in Psychiatry – PharmD clinical Neuropsychiatry Pharmacology Fellow rotates in clinical neurology at Truman Medical Center – Hospital Hill. This fellow is supervised by Dr. Donohoe.

Resident physicians are evaluated in six focus areas that include: (1) Patient care and procedural skills, (2) Medical knowledge, (3) Practice-based learning and improvement, (4) Interpersonal and communication skills, (5) Professionalism, and (6) Systems-based practice.

At the beginning of the clinical rotation resident physicians are oriented to the clinical service and learn about the competency-based goals and objectives. Regularly scheduled didactic sessions are included in this rotation including: case conferences, resident seminar, neuro-radiology case conference, and a journal club.

Resident physicians and fellows must provide patient care that is compassionate, appropriate and effective for the treatment of health problems and the promotion of health.

Residents must be able to competently perform the neurological examination and will learn to manage patients with complex neurological problems. Residents will be directly supervised by the Neurology Clinical faculty.