Does Setting Specific Goals and Providing Feedback During Training Result in Better Acquisition of Laparscopic Skills?

Gonzalez, Rodrigo; Bowers, Steven P.; Smith, C. Daniel; Ramshaw, Bruce J.
January 2004
American Surgeon;Jan2004, Vol. 70 Issue 1, p35
Academic Journal
The aim of this study was to evaluate whether setting specific goals and providing feedback stimulates trainees to improve their laparoscopic skills. Two groups of eight fourth-year medical students practiced on a MIST-VR trainer, a black box laparoscopic suturing trainer, and computerbased training modules for 30 minutes, twice a week for 3 weeks. A precourse assessment of laparoscopic and open suturing skills and performance of MIST-VR tasks was obtained. Students in group A were given specific goals to achieve and were provided feedback. Group B was given no specific goals or feedback. At the end of the course, seven different tasks and skills were evaluated and subjectively scored during a laparoscopic cholecystectomy in an animal laboratory. A higher number of students in group A completed 10 or more repetitions in the MIST-VR than in group B. The groups showed no difference in final MIST-VR or overall scores in the animal laboratory. The only different scores between groups were for the use of the nondominant hand (NDH). The initial scores in the acquired cut task (ACT) in the MIST-VR correlated well with the performance in the animal laboratory. Setting goals and providing feedback tended to motivate students to practice more compared with the self-directed group. There was no difference in final MIST-VR scores or the performance in the animal laboratory, except for the NDH. The best predictor of performance was initial ACT score.


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