Master's research project


Master's research project

The problem


Transgender people face barriers when accessing health care due to trans-related discrimination by medical professionals. Consequently, they are at an increased risk for suicidality and other negative health outcomes, highlighting the pressing need to educate our medical students and physicians on transgender health topics.  However, North American medical schools teach a median of five formal hours on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) health topics over the entire med curriculum. Among these topics, medical students reported the least confidence in dealing with transgender-related health topics. Comprehensive learning materials on trans healthcare that meet medical students’ unique learning strategies have yet to be developed. Case-based learning (CBL) curricula has been shown to improve clinical competency. Now, e-learning modules that utilize CBL strategies via virtual patients are becoming increasingly popular due to their accessibility and teaching efficacy. However, an interactive, case-study of a transgender client looking to start hormone replacement therapy has not yet been developed.


proposed solution


The Transgender Client Simulator: An intearctive, case-based e-learning module

I am creating an interactive e-learning module for medical students and healthcare professionals interested in providing trans-inclusive care. The module guides users in conducting an initial assessment of a transgender client looking to start hormone-replacement therapy. Users will need to demonstrate their competency by taking a client history, obtaining baseline measurements, assessing a client’s readiness, managing any risks, and providing a differential diagnosis of a virtual avatar. Throughout the module, learners make clinical decisions that will affect their rapport with the virtual client. Immersive and interactive, this novel e-module is a ‘choose your own adventure’-type of experience that teaches the importance of inclusive language, intersectional identities, and above all, empathy for this minority group. 

AUDIENCE: Medical students and healthcare professionals interested in trans-inclusive care

TOOLS:  Adobe Illustrator & Captivate, Javascript

PLATFORMS: Desktop, tablet, mobile
CONTENT EXPERTS: Dr. Edward Kucharski & Dr. Laurence Biro from the University of Toronto's Faculty of Medicine; Jordan Zaitzow from Rainbow Health Ontario
SUPERVISORS: Dr. Shelley Wall & Dr. Jodie Jenkinson from the University of Toronto's Biomedical Communications program



Become immersed in engaging patient-doctor conversations

test your communication and knowledge skills

Your decisions affect your patient outcome


Recipient of the 2016 Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS)

Recipient of the 2016 Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS)


This project is still in-progress

Please check back soon for more updates