About TUSK

Overview

As many of you know, we have been actively developing TUSK (the Tufts University Sciences Knowledgebase) for more than 15 years. TUSK had its origins in our Health Sciences Library, and was developed in partnership with the School of Medicine's Educational Affairs Office. Throughout its history, TUSK has continued to maintain its focus on meeting the changing educational and informatics needs of health sciences education. In this regard, TUSK will be one of the first systems to meet the new AAMC Curriculum Inventory Standard.. At Tufts, TUSK supports the educational programs of the Medical, Dental and Cuumings (Veterinary) Schools and has been a cornerstone of our University global health initiatives. Installations of TUSK can now be found in Health Sciences Schools in Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Ghana, Congo, Ethiopia, India, Sweden, and Saudi Arabia. TUSK is also serving as the engine behind the Tufts OpenCourseWare Project. Active Citizenship and Community Service are key elements of a Tufts education and we are proud to announce that the TUSK software suite has been re-factored for open source and is being released in March 2012 under the Educational Community License. We are happy to share this news with you and hope that we can work as a community to help develop and share tools that will facilitate and enhance medical education in North America and around the world.

TUSK Core Principles

  • Provide a comprehensive knowledge management system for health_sciences institutions
  • Enhance and support the work flow of an health sciences institution
  • Meet and exceed accreditation standards for education
  • Support knowledge management on a personal and school-wide level
  • Enrich the connections between school and clinical affiliates
  • Reinforce reusable content across the system
  • Ensure access to content to TUSK users across the barriers of schools, courses, appliance (phone or computer), and time
  • Continue to develop tools to:
    • Foster horizontal and vertical curriculum integration
    • Support cross-disciplinary learning
    • Support competency-based education
    • Support local/school-based administration
    • Promote continuous improvement of a curriculum and its systems

Architecture

TUSK is built on the LAMP framework - Linux, Apach, MysSQL and Perl. It has a mobile interface. Its content repository uses the US National Library of Medicine's Unified Medical Language System (UMLS) as its controlled vocabulary for metadata to describe and manage the content.

Support

We want to thank the agencies and organizations that have supported the development of TUSK over the last fifteen years. Specifically, we wish to thank The US National Library of Medicine, The US Department of Agriculture, The US AID, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and institutions that wish to remain anonymous.

References

  • S.Albright, M. Lee, Case Study mHealth: From smartphones to Smart Systems R.Krohn and D.Metcalf
  • S. Albright ,M. Bailey ,D. Walker Next Learning Unwrapped, First Edition 2011. Chapter 5: Learn-on-the-Go-Podcasts, Videocasts, and Mobile Learning pp60-68.
  • Vyas, S. Albright, D. Walker, A. Zachariah and M.Y. Lee. An India-USA partnership to enhance training and service delivery at remote medical training sites in India by using mobile technology supported through an e-learning institutional hub, Journal of Distance Education Volume 31, Issue 2, pages 211-226, August 2010
  • Aarons, R, Albright S, Using Electronic Virtual Patients and Collaborative Groups for Problem Based Learning, Bio-Algorithms and Med-Systems Journal Volume 6, No.11 p 127-132, 2010
  • Ellaway R, Poulton T., Fors U, McGee J, Albright S. Building a virtual Patient Commons, Medical Teacher 30(2):170-174 2008
  • Lee MY, Albright S, O'Leary L, Terkla D, Wilson N, Expanding the Reach of Health Sciences Education and Empowering Others, OCW initiative at Tufts Medical Teacher (30)2:159-163 2008
  • Lee MY. Albright SA. Alkasab T. Damassa DA. Wang PJ. Eaton EK. Tufts Health Sciences Database: lessons, issues, and opportunities. Academic Medicine. 78(3):254-64, 2003 Mar.
  • Metz, BA., Lee, MY, Albright, S, Alkasab, T. Transforming Medical and Health Science Education at Tufts University. EDUCAUSE Quarterly, Vol. 24, Number 4, 2001.

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