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ERIC Number: EJ741988
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Sep
Pages: 5
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 8
ISSN: ISSN-1043-4046
How to Engage Medical Students in Chronobiology: An Example on Autorhythmometry
Rol de Lama, M. A.; Lozano, J. P.; Ortiz, V.; Sanchez-Vazquez, F. J.; Madrid, J. A.
Advances in Physiology Education, v29 n3 p160-164 Sep 2005
This contribution describes a new laboratory experience that improves medical students' learning of chronobiology by introducing them to basic chronobiology concepts as well as to methods and statistical analysis tools specific for circadian rhythms. We designed an autorhythmometry laboratory session where students simultaneously played the role of researchers and experimental subjects. During this session, which lasted 24 h, students recorded their own arterial pressure, heart rate, oral temperature, forced expiratory flow, glucose tolerance, muscular strength, reaction time, and sensorimotor coordination at regular intervals and also took the Horne and Ostberg test, after which they analyzed their own data. Furthermore, to gather information from subjects under normal sleep and eating schedules, some students acquired data at home. To guide and help students with their work, a dedicated web page was implemented with scientific references, cosinor analysis software, and other valuable information. All these "raw" data were combined into a single database that students could use to evaluate whatever aspect of the data they seemed fit. A number of suggestions were offered to them as guidance. Students were then instructed to write a scientific article on the subject they had chosen. The experience was highly rewarding for both instructors and students alike. In view of the high level of absenteeism in Spanish universities and the fact that 93% of the students attended the exam and 95% of these passed, the experience was considered a great success. (Contains 4 figures.)
American Physiological Society. 9650 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20814-3991. Tel: 301-634-7164; Fax: 301-634-7241; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Spain