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Watson, K. “Perspective: Serious Play: Teaching Medical Skills With Improvisational Theater Techniques,” Acad Med. 2011 Oct;86(10):1260-5. The paper that introduced the world to "Medical Improv," describing a course for medical students at Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine.
Watson K, Fu B. "Medical Improv: A Novel Approach to Teaching Communication and Professionalism Skills." Ann Intern Med. [Epub ahead of print 26 July 2016]. A description of the unique role that Medical Improv plays in medical education.
Stokes, TA, et al. “Teaching Antenatal Counseling Skills to Neonatal Providers,” Semin Perinatol. 2014 Feb:38(1):47-51. A workshop using medical improv to teach counseling skills to neonatology fellows for challenging conversations.
Sawyer T, et al. "Medical Improvisation Training to Enhance the Antenatal Counseling Skills of Neonatologists and Neonatal Fellows: A Pilot Study," J of Mat-Fet & Neonat Med [Epub ahead of print 2 Sep 2016]. Building on Stokes' work, authors led a medical improv workshop, and assessed self-perceived skill retention immediately post-workshop and at 3-month followup.
Boesen K, et al. "Improvisational exercises to improve pharmacy students' professional communication skills." Am J Pharm Educ. 2009;73: Article 35. A detailed description of a course integrating improv exercises into a course at the University of Arizona Pharmacy school.
Shochet R, et al. 'Thinking on my feet': An improvisation course to enhance students' confidence and responsiveness in the medical interview. Educ Prim Care. 24(2):119-24. Description of an improvisation course taught at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.
Hoffman A, et al. “Improving medical student communication skills through improvisational theatre.” Med Educ. 2008;42:537–538. Brief report of a well-received elective taught at UC San Francisco.
Koppett, Kat. Training to Imagine. Practical and useful, with extensive and well-catalogued collection of exercises.
IMPROV THEORY & PRACTICE
Madson, Patricia Ryan. Improv Wisdom: Don’t Prepare, Just Show Up. A beautiful description of core improv maxims and their real-life applications. Elegant and easy to read. Written by a sage of improv and life in general.
Spolin, Viola. Improvisation in Theatre. The original book of improv theatre. Extensive collection of exercises and principles, with thoughtful discussion about underlying philosophy.
Halpern, Charna, et al. Truth in Comedy. Fundamental concepts of improv theatre. Clearly written, easy to read, captures the improv essence.
Johnstone, Keith. Impro: Improvisation for the Theatre. Profound insights about status behaviors, and relevant exercises.
Fey, Tina. "The Rules of Improvisation That Will Change Your Life and Reduce Belly Fat" from Bossypants. Embedded into this great book is an amusing and spot-on summary of core improv principles.
Libera, Anne. The Second City Almanac of Improvisation. History of improv at Second City Theatre, with helpful insights into core improv principles, and entertaining anecdotes. You'll recognize many of these people.
Jagodowski, TJ, et al. Improvisation at the Speed of Life. Two improv pros share their insights about improv and the principles that work best for them. Clear and to the point. PG-13.