IU School of Medicine



Course gives the student an opportunity to participate in the evaluation and management of patients with neoplastic conditions in a radiation oncology department. The student will have an opportunity to work closely with radiation oncologists to learn specialized examination techniques. The student with see how available treatment options for cancers and related conditions are developed and posed, learn the basis for treatment recommendations, become aware of the technical challenges of radiation therapy, and better understand the medical and psycho-social problems encountered in patients with a serious illness with uncertain outcomes. The student will also learn how radiation biology and radiation physics are integrated into clinical practice. Multidisciplinary conferences are held frequently with other clinical departments as well as intradepartmental lectures and conferences in radiation oncology. This clinically-oriented elective gives the student an opportunity to observe how advances in radiation oncology are scientifically developed, tested and introduced. The student will deliver a lecture on a topic related to cancer with an emphasis on use of primary literature to solve a clinical or basic science problem, and will also be assigned a computer lab to practice skills in identifying radiographic anatomic correlations. Alternative study focused on an approved faculty mentored research project is also possible.

Elective Details:

Primary Contact for Add/Drops: Evern Amos (evamos@iupui.edu)

Director: Mark Langer, M.D.

Campus: Indianapolis

Location: Department of Radiation Oncology - IU School of Medicine, IU Health Melvin & Bren Simon Cancer Center, Roudebush VA Medical Center, IU Health Methodist Hospital (Indianapolis)

Other Faculty: Paul Anthony, MD; Gordon Guo, MD; Mark Langer, MD; Tim Lautenschlaeger, MD; Feng-Ming Kong, MD; Naoyuki Saito, MD; Gordon Watson, MD; Richard Zellars, MD; Huisi Ai, PhD; Joseph Dynlacht, PhD; Jian-Yue Jin, PhD; Marc Mendonca, PhD; Xiaoyi Lu, PhD. [List provided by Evern Amos, 944-1315].

Learning Objectives

  • 1) Identify and describe anatomic regions of the head and neck (MK1)
  • 2) Identify the signs and symptoms of tumor involvement (MK3)
  • 3) Demonstrate radiographic identification of regional anatomy using texts, assigned literature and web based tools (MK1)
  • 4) Demonstrate segmentation on a series of transaxial CT slices on an index case of defined anatomic compartments using text and literature based definitions, illustrated sample examples, and CD study aids to identify bounding normal structures (MK1)
  • 5) Present a talk that addresses an oncologic question using primary source literature- The question may relate to clinical or basic science (ISC1)


  • Clinical Performance Evaluation Form 1. Contouring case study set- student will contour on a sample case using radiographic atlases, and validity will be checked by course director. 2. Student will present a case to faculty and accuracy of assessments and validity of conclusions will be evaluated. 3. Course director will attend talk or review slides and appropriateness of slides to objective of using primary literature to address a focused question will be judged on criteria A) whether the student identifies an oncologic question that can be operationally answered B) whether there is evidence that primary literature data bases were consulted to address the question C) whether the analysis of the literature with respect to the question was accurate and relevant D) whether the display of the analysis was informative and efficient.

Enrollment Information

Prerequisites: 3rd or 4th year status; interest in oncology

Availability with Max Students per Month:


Duty Hours: 40

Time Distribution: 75% Clinical; 15% Didactic; 10% Radiographic anatomy computer lab

Elective Type Category: CP - Clinical Practice

Notes and Enrollment Information:


Third Year Elective? Yes

Interprofessional Skills and Service Learning

Interprofessional Collaborative Skills: Yes

Skills Description: Team includes: RNs Radiation Therapists Radiation Dosimetrists Radiation Physicists Administrative personnel Nutritionists Colleagues in other specialties

Service Learning Included: None