I was fortunate enough to present a poster of the study described below at the Association for the Study of Medical Education (ASME) Annual Scientific Meeting 2012 in Brighton.
The work described below is some that I undertook as a final year medical student. I designed questionnaires for participants on a peer-led revision course in a way that would allow me to collect data and analyse it after the course. This gave an evaluation of the revision course from the perspective of the students who attended. I then analysed the data which was collected during the first 4 months of my F1 placement and I submitted an abstract which was presented at this meeting.
At the conference I was expected to explain my poster during the designated poster viewing sessions to those who were interested. This process was helpful as it gave me a lot of ideas for future work, as well as some useful feedback on how I had conducted the work I was presenting. During the lunchtime session there was a moderated poster presentation where I presented a summary of this study and answered some questions. There were, as expected, some questions which highlighted the limitations of the study, but overall the questions were helpful.
As well as presenting my poster during the conference, I was also able to attend some interesting sessions and workshops which helped develop my understanding of medical education, in particular the assessment of junior doctors. I hope that in the future I’ll be able to attend more medical education conferences.
F2, UH Bristol
Peer Assisted Learning in Undergraduate Paediatrics
Background and Purpose:
Peer assisted learning has been shown to be an effective method of teaching with benefits to students and tutors alike. Despite this, the effect of peer assisted learning in paediatrics is yet to be formally evaluated. The aim of this study was to evaluate a student-led revision course for students preparing for undergraduate examinations in paediatrics.
All penultimate year medical students at one institution were invited to attend a one-day student-led revision course in paediatrics, consisting of a lecture, small group teaching and a revision booklet. Course participants were asked to complete an anonymous pre-course and post course questionnaire based on 5-point likert scale (1=strongly disagree, 5=strongly agree) and qualitative responses. The difference between pre- and post-course feedback scores was analysed using the independent samples Student’s t-test. Post-course feedback was also collected from peer tutors.
140 penultimate year students attended the revision course, 87 (62%) completed the course evaluation questionnaires. Students felt significantly more prepared for paediatric exams after the course (mean score = 3.47 post-course vs. 2.16 pre-course, p<0.0001). Students also felt significantly more prepared to manage children in clinical practice after the course (mean score = 3.49 post-course vs. 2.53 pre-course, p<0.0001). The course as a whole was rated as good by students (mean score 4.35/5) with the small group sessions voted as the most useful part by 83% of students. 100% of students felt that being taught by peers added educational benefit above the conventional teaching they received by paediatricians during their paediatrics attachment. Positive feedback was also received from peer tutors who reported a perceived improvement in their teaching skills and confidence after the course.
Discussion and Conclusions:
The results of this study demonstrate the positive evaluation of a student-led undergraduate paediatrics revision course, in particular the small group sessions which included personalised feedback on performance. Peer assisted teaching is clearly of benefit in paediatrics and students feel that additional learning can be gained from being taught by peers, rather than solely through conventional methods. Peer assisted teaching should be encouraged in undergraduate paediatric curricula not only to bring educational benefits but to increase enthusiasm for the specialty and improve recruitment to paediatrics.