A goal for Core Surgery Clerkship students is to link the clinical knowledge and skills of surgery to the content learned in their pre-clinical curriculum.
Structurally, Core Surgery Clerkships are brief, often only 4-12 weeks in length, limiting the student's exposure to clinical care. Learning in this environment of limited exposure is best achieved if students can generalize principles learned from one clinical situation to others they may not encounter directly.
Details of specific diseases/problems (i.e. the staging system for any one form of cancer) familiar to those caring for subsets of patients on a consistent basis are likely be forgotten with disuse by students caring for subsets of patients for brief periods of time.