A few decades later, researchers recognised the structure of medical knowledge, its internal organisation and relationship with memory are crucial to explaining medical clinical reasoning development, rather than it being a generic problem-solving trait. Different researchers have focused on understanding how knowledge is organised in the minds of experts and how this impacts on clinical reasoning processes, while others have focused on the process of solving clinical problems - 'where do the hypotheses come from?'
It's fair to say that there is a lot we still do not know about how the clinical reasoning of experts differs from their peers. But this is all important when it comes to teaching, because sound clinical reasoning is vital for safe, effective care.
For years I have taught using concept maps, but now I understand why. Here is an example below which I use to teach junior doctors who ask me about partial seizures, usually just after we have seen someone who has presented with this problem. Teaching this way is usually followed by a 'light bulb moment'. Combined with reflection and some strategic reading, suddenly seizures make sense, and diagnostic reasoning has a structure for the next case. Concepts maps reflect how the brain organises knowledge, they help to conceptualise things, and aid knowledge retrieval - these are key to sound clinical reasoning.