ERIC Number: EJ970731
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Aug
Abstractor: As Provided
Learning Physical Examination Skills outside Timetabled Training Sessions: What Happens and Why?
Duvivier, Robbert J.; van Geel, Koos; van Dalen, Jan; Scherpbier, Albert J. J. A.; van der Vleuten, Cees P. M.
Advances in Health Sciences Education, v17 n3 p339-355 Aug 2012
Lack of published studies on students' practice behaviour of physical examination skills outside timetabled training sessions inspired this study into what activities medical students undertake to improve their skills and factors influencing this. Six focus groups of a total of 52 students from Years 1-3 using a pre-established interview guide. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and analyzed using qualitative methods. The interview guide was based on questionnaire results; overall response rate for Years 1-3 was 90% (n = 875). Students report a variety of activities to improve their physical examination skills. On average, students devote 20% of self-study time to skill training with Year 1 students practising significantly more than Year 3 students. Practice patterns shift from just-in-time learning to a longitudinal self-directed approach. Factors influencing this change are assessment methods and simulated/real patients. Learning resources used include textbooks, examination guidelines, scientific articles, the Internet, videos/DVDs and scoring forms from previous OSCEs. Practising skills on fellow students happens at university rooms or at home. Also family and friends were mentioned to help. Simulated/real patients stimulated students to practise of physical examination skills, initially causing confusion and anxiety about skill performance but leading to increased feelings of competence. Difficult or enjoyable skills stimulate students to practise. The strategies students adopt to master physical examination skills outside timetabled training sessions are self-directed. OSCE assessment does have influence, but learning takes place also when there is no upcoming assessment. Simulated and real patients provide strong incentives to work on skills. Early patient contacts make students feel more prepared for clinical practice. (Contains 1 table and 1 box.)
Descriptors: Video Technology, Medical Students, Textbooks, Physical Examinations, Focus Groups, Training, Patients, Program Effectiveness, Methods, Interviews, Clinical Experience, Student Attitudes, Student Evaluation, Teaching Methods
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A