How Well Do Third-Year Medical Students Learn Key Objectives in a Case-Based Surgical Lecture Series?

Sheehan, Maureen K.; Gabram, Sheryl G.A.; Minks M.D., Kenneth D.; Aranha, Gerard V.; Gamelli, Richard L.; Fisher, Susan G.
May 2000
American Surgeon;May2000, Vol. 66 Issue 5, p470
Academic Journal
Faculty members were asked to list major and minor concepts of their case-based session presented during the 12-week 3rd-year surgical clerkship. After each session, students were queried to list the key concepts presented. Data were collected from two groups: one at the end of an academic year and a second at the beginning of the next academic year. Faculty members listed a median of 10 major and 15 minor concepts. The mean number of matched major concepts ranged from 0.2 to 4, and from 0.2 to 3.4 for minor concepts. In a comparative analysis, the end-of-the-year students listed a higher number of matched concepts for 17 of the 20 sessions than the beginning of the year students (8 sessions reached statistical significance, P < 0.05). The current case-based teaching method is not effective in emphasizing key concepts to students. Reformatting cases to better align with key concepts may be one solution to enhance a student's ability to grasp key concepts. Students at the end of the academic year outperformed those at the beginning of the year. This additional variable needs to be considered by faculty and incorporated into their teaching techniques.


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