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  • Robert A. Novelline, M.D.

  • Robert A. Novelline, MD, is professor of radiology, director of Emergency Radiology, and director of the Core Radiology Clerkship at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School. His impact on radiology education and teaching methods has spread worldwide. Dr Novelline’s teachings can be divided into two areas: emergency radiology and medical student/resident/ fellow education.

    Establishing one of the nation’s first emergency radiology residency/fellowship programs in the early 1980s, Dr Novelline has since trained hundreds of residents, fellows, and junior staff in this subspecialty. He was one of the founders of the American Society of Emergency Radiology (ASER) and played a key role in the design of its annual meeting. Some 20 years later, Dr Novelline continues to keep the ASER educational program on the cutting edge. Dr Novelline led the effort to revise, expand, and disseminate the National Curriculum in Emergency Radiology, a major focus of ASER. ASER has acknowledged Dr Novelline’s important contributions by awarding him its gold medal in 2000. Radiology of Emergency Medicine, written by John H. Harris, Jr, MD, William H. Harris, MD, and Dr Novelline, has been the definitive reference textbook on emergency radiology for over a decade. As a speaker and lecturer, Dr Novelline’s style has long lasting effects.

    As editor and co-author of Squire’s Fundamentals of Radiology, the premier textbook used by medical schools throughout North America and abroad, and founder of the Alliance for Medical Student Educators in Radiology (AMSER), Dr Novelline put medical student education on the map. Dr Novelline’s medical student curricula have been adopted at many other schools and he has often hosted and advised other clerkship directors and educators. Not only has Dr Novelline been directly involved in medical student education, serving as mentor for countless medical students, but also in the mentorship of radiology educators.

    Other educational endeavors include serving as co-chair of the RSNA/American College of Radiology (ACR) Web site for the public, RadiologyInfo.org; 9 years on the RSNA Refresher Course Committee as chair of Emergency Radiology, vice-chair, and committee chair, where he reorganized the tracks to accommodate emerging technologies such as molecular imaging, developed vertical courses such as the Essentials of Radiology, and many case-based, interactive audience-response courses; and service to the Association of University Radiologists (AUR) as a member and chair of the numerous committees including the Ad Hoc Committee of Program Directors, which became the Association of Program Directors in Radiology (APDR). He earned the APDR Achievement Award in 2004.

    Dr Novelline has had over 50 visiting professorship appointments around the world. He received no less than a dozen unique honors and awards, including 16 nominations for the Harvard Medical School Prize for Excellence in Teaching, 10 Harvard Medical School Committee on Educational Evaluation Citations for Clerkship Directors (whose student ratings scored 1.5 or higher), and 5 Medical Student Teaching Awards in Radiology, from Massachusetts General Hospital. The list of achievements continues with 5 honorary lectures, service on the editorial boards of Emergency Radiology, Investigative Radiology, and Radiology, and as a manuscript reviewer for Academic Radiology, American Journal of Radiology, European Journal of Radiology, Journal of the American College of Radiology, Journal of Trauma, and The New England Journal of Medicine.

    “Early in my academic career, I was an audience member listening to Bob Novelline’s truly superb lecture on facial and abdominal trauma. More than 10 years later, I still remember many of his teaching points. His outstanding teaching style, excellent diagrams, and rich case material have been both an inspiration and a model for me as my own career as a radiology educator has developed.” - O. Clark West, MD, 2007-08 ASER President

    “Dr Novelline’s generosity, encouragement, and mentorship have guided me as I rose to AUR’s AMSER presidency, and I know I am not alone as a recipient of this generosity. … He has spent his long and illustrious professional career teaching our teachers as well as our learners.” - Janet A. Neutze, MD, 2007-08 AMSER President

    “Dr Novelline has been a consummate innovator in education, deftly weaving well-working classical components of education with new, improved and modern versions of teaching. Furthermore, his methods are frequently supplanted by academic research and shared with the world at large. … He is truly a leader in every sense of the word; in fact, he is a leader of leaders.” - Mark E. Mullins, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Radiology, Assistant Program Director, and Director of Radiology Medical Student Education at Emory University