The “Basic Medical Skills” course at the Institute of Surgical Research is designed to teach monitoring skills. By def- inition, monitoring is the continuous or repeated, regular observation of a chosen characteristic of an object at con- stant sites by standardized methods. In medicine, monitoring may be defined as the interpretation of all collected and available clinical data in order to help with the recognition of present or future mishaps or unfavorable system condi- tions in time. In this sense, a cross-section of vital data should be obtained and analyzed in each case; accordingly the technique and methodology (the “skills”) of the analyzer are critical. Further important goals of the course are to foster skills-based knowledge and to broaden the correlation of phys- iology and anatomy to cover acute clinical care. In line with this, we utilize a student-oriented teaching methodology which is strongly based on self-education. Emphasis is placed on procedures, critical thinking and assessment of skills to support a career choice in those medical specialties in which decision-making or “problem-solving” is critical. The themes of the course are organized into modules. These curricular structures are used to summarize the back- ground knowledge and to provide practical expertise on current monitoring possibilities relating to separate, well-de- fined organ systems.