As more and more information technology (IT) resources become available both for support of campus- based medical education and for Web-based learning, it becomes increasingly interesting to map the information technology resources available to medical students and the attitudes students have towards their use.
To determine how extensively and effectively information handling skills are being taught in the medical curriculum, the study investigated Internet and computer availability and usage, and attitudes towards information technology among first-year medical students in Aarhus, Denmark, during a five-year period.
In the period from 1998 to 2002, students beginning the first semester of medical school were given courses on effective use of IT in their studies. As a part of the tutorials, the students were asked to complete a web-based questionnaire which included questions related to IT readiness and attitudes towards using IT in studies.
A total of 1159 students (78%) responded. Overall, 71.7% of the respondents indicating they had access to a computer at home, a number that did not change significantly during the study period. Over time, the power of students' computers and the use of e-mail and Internet did increase significantly. By fall 2002, approximately 90% of students used e-mail regularly, 80 % used the Internet regularly, and 60 % had access to the Internet from home. Significantly more males than females had access to a computer at home, and males had a more positive attitude towards the use of computers in their medical studies. A fairly constant number of students (3-7 %) stated that they would prefer not to have to use computers in their studies.
Taken together with our experience from classroom teaching, these results indicate optional teaching of basic information technology still needs to be integrated into medical studies, and that this need does not seem likely to disappear in the near future.
Globalization is altering health and health care. At the same time, prospective and current medical students are increasingly requesting global health training and creating opportunities when these are not provided by medical schools. To understand the type and amount of global health activities provided in Canadian medical schools, the authors undertook a survey of global health educational opportunities available at all 17 medical schools during the 2005-2006 academic year.
Using a structured questionnaire, information was collected from deans' offices, institutional representatives, faculty, students, and medical school Web sites.
All 17 medical schools participated. Canadian medical schools vary widely in their approach to global health education, ranging from neither required nor elective courses in global health to well-developed, two-year electives that include didactic and overseas training. There is no consensus on the educational content covered, the year in which global health issues are taught, whether materials should be elective or required, or how much training is needed. Of the 16 Canadian medical schools that allow students to participate in international electives, 44% allow these electives to occur without clear faculty oversight or input.
Despite both the strong, growing demand from medical students and the changing societal forces that call for better global health training, Canadian medical school curricula are not well positioned to address these needs. Improving global health opportunities in Canadian medical school curricula will likely require national leadership from governing academic bodies.
BACKGROUND: In medical education, feedback from students is helpful in course evaluation. However, the impact of medical students' feedback on long-term course development is seldom reported. In this project we studied the correspondence between medical students' descriptive evaluations and key features of course development over five years. METHODS: Qualitative content analysis was used. The context was consultation skills courses in the middle of the Göteborg undergraduate curriculum during five years. An analysis of 158 students' descriptive evaluations was brought together with an analysis of key features of course development; learning objectives, course records, protocols from teachers' evaluations and field notes. Credibility of data was tested by two colleagues and by presenting themes at seminars and conferences. Authors' experiences of evaluating the course over many years were also used. RESULTS: A corresponding pattern was found in students' descriptive evaluations and key features of course development, indicating the impact of students' open-ended feed-back. Support to facilitators and a curriculum reform also contributed. Students' descriptive feedback was both initiating and validating longitudinal course implementation. During five years, students' descriptive evaluations and teachers' course records were crucial sources in a learner-centred knowledge-building process of course development. CONCLUSION: Students' descriptive evaluations and course records can be seen as important instruments in developing both courses and students' learning. Continuity and endurance in the evaluation process must be emphasized for achieving relevant and useful results.
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Undergraduate psychiatric education should be concerned mostly with those aspects of psychiatry required for the proper practice of medicine. Psychiatric concepts and techniques are applicable to all medical practice and relevant to the daily work of every physician or surgeon. Therefore, in the psychiatric training of medical students the focus should be primarily on teaching "psychiatry of medical practice" and much less on teaching "specialty psychiatry." The teaching of psychiatry for medical practice will be best accomplished by selecting patients who are more like those the student will see later on as a practising physician. A systematic effort should be made to develop joint teaching with other departments, if we are to hope that students will carry over the approach we teach them to other subjects of medicine. Counselling and psychotherapy are essential skills for every physician or surgeon; medical students should be taught these skills by psychiatrists who are not just skilled psychotherapists but are also comfortable in their role as physicians in view of the importance of this role for the development of the identity of the medical student as a physician. The quality of the psychiatric training of medical students is dependent to a large extent on the priority accorded to undergraduate teaching by the department of psychiatry; competing activities, however, can result in undergraduate teaching being given less than top priority. Long-standing difficulties which psychiatry and psychiatrists experience in the medical school may impede undergraduate psychiatric education; these difficulties can be lessened by the closer involvement of psychiatrists with other physicians in the clinical and educational programs.
Over the past 5 years, Calgary clinicians experienced the restructuring of health care delivery and a move to a presentation-based curriculum at the University of Calgary. Course coordinators have noted increased difficulty in recruiting clinical lecturers at the preclinical undergraduate level. This study was designed to evaluate the relative importance of factors that may influence the time clinicians spend teaching at this level.
This descriptive survey was conducted within the University of Calgary, Faculty of Medicine, a teaching institution affiliated with the Calgary Regional Health Authority, which is responsible for the delivery of health care within the City of Calgary. Basic scientists, residents, and adjunct medical professionals were excluded from a list of lecturers for the academic year 1996-97, leaving a target population of 386. Respondents were stratified according to university appointment, specialty, type of medical training, and hours taught in the 1996-97 academic year. Dependent variables included the financial constraints, time constraints, health care reform, changes in the undergraduate medical education curriculum, and lack of recognition on availability for teaching. Written comments were also categorized and analyzed according to the same variables. A response rate of 79% (n = 305) was achieved. Of the respondents, 52% agreed that recent reform has made it more difficult to teach; full-time faculty were less likely to agree compared to non-full-time faculty (60% vs. 44%; nonparametric median test, chi 2 = 6.18, p = .046). Twice as many family physicians reported that financial constraint was a factor (66%) when compared to other specialists, whereas relatively few full-time faculty noted it to be a concern (12%) when compared to major part-time (43%) and non-full-time/major part-time appointees (66%; chi 2 = 23.4, p
Purpose There is a growing emphasis on teaching patient safety principles and quality improvement (QI) processes in medical education curricula. This paper aims to present how the Faculty of Medicine at Memorial University of Newfoundland engaged medical students in quality improvement during their recent curriculum renewal process. Design/methodology/approach In the 2013-2014 academic year, the Faculty of Medicine at Memorial University of Newfoundland launched an undergraduate medical education curriculum renewal process. This presented a unique opportunity to teach quality improvement by involving students in the ongoing development and continuous improvement of their undergraduate curriculum through the implementation of quality circles and other related QI activities. Findings The authors' experience shows that implementing QI processes is beneficial in the medical education environment, particularly during times of curriculum redesign or implementation of new initiatives. Originality/value Student engagement and participation in the QI process is an excellent way to teach basic QI concepts and improve curriculum program outcomes.