About the Author

William A. Schiavone, DO, FACP, FACC


  • DO, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • IM Residency and Cardiology Fellowship, Cleveland Clinic


  • Staff Cardiologist, Cleveland Clinic, 1983-88 and 2012-2018
  • Private Practice, Director of Echocardiography, Summa Health, Akron, 1989-2004
  • Professor of Medicine, Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine, 1996-2004
  • Staff Cardiologist, Director of Non-Invasive Cardiology, Geisinger Medical Center, 2004-2011

Selected Teaching Awards

  • 1987 Cleveland Clinic Cardiology Distinguished Teacher of the Year
  • 1990 St. Thomas Medical Center (later Summa) Teacher of the Year
  • 2004-5 Geisinger Medical Center Distinguished Teaching Award
  • 2018 Cleveland Clinic CV Medicine Fellows' Outstanding Educator

About the Method

EKGaction’s teaching method is based on the following tenets:

  • Presentations of EKGs with a clinical history make diagnoses easier for trainees to remember.
  • Giving trainees a chance to diagnose the patient on their own, before revealing the answer, makes learning points easier for them to commit to memory.

Case-based presentation: Teaching with a story

Dr. Schiavone has published two successful books based on this method of “storytelling.”

His first book, on EKG and chest x-ray interpretation (1990), features detailed case studies that simulate the cardiologist’s patient visit and clinical journey, using the EKG and x-ray to lead the reader to the correct diagnosis.

His second book on EKG interpretation (2006) does the same, and further includes learning points and suggested readings.

Case-based exercises show improved skills

While at Geisinger Medical Center, for 20 consecutive weeks each year from 2005 to 2010, Dr. Schiavone prepared cardiology fellows a weekly quiz including case presentation, answers and learning points. The quizzes were graded and tabulated.

In 2007, Dr. Schiavone presented a 3-year assessment of cardiology fellows’ quiz results at Proceedings of Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME): “Structured Weekly Exercises Improve Electrocardiographic Interpretations Skills of Cardiology Fellowship Trainees,” together with Cardiology Fellowship Director Jamshid Shirani, MD.

Upon his move to Cleveland Clinic, Dr. Schiavone continued his weekly EKG quiz for cardiology fellows at this institution from 2014 to 2017.

Dr. Schiavone wrote a Doximity Op-Med entitled “An EKG is Only as Good as the Quality of its Interpretation.”