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ERIC Number: EJ1084916
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0307-5079
The Struggle to Understand: Exploring Medical Students' Experiences of Learning and Understanding during a Basic Science Course
Weurlander, Maria; Scheja, Max; Hult, Håkan; Wernerson, Annika
Studies in Higher Education, v41 n3 p462-477 2016
The aim of the research reported in this paper was to explore students' "journey" towards conceptual understanding during an undergraduate course. The task that medical students face--to learn a substantial quantity of detailed knowledge and integrate into a coherent whole in a limited time frame--is demanding. Seven students were interviewed in a group, and 17 students gave their reflections in writing. Data was gathered from both groups on five separate occasions. The findings suggest that students seek different kinds of understandings as they get to grips with their studies. The forms of understanding were: understanding as "knowing the language", "knowing the map", "knowing the catalogue" and "experiencing an integrated whole". Students first appeared to focus on the first two forms, and later in the course, as they learned more, they focused on the "catalogue" or the "integrated whole". The findings point to potential pathways students might take towards gaining deeper understanding.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Sweden
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A