Teaching and Assessing Reflecting Skills among Undergraduate Medical Students Experiencing Research JC01-JC05
Dr. Vasudha Devi,
Professor and Head, Department of Pharmacology, Melaka Manipal Medical College (Manipal Campus),
Manipal University, Manipal-576104, India.
Introduction: Reflection is the integral component of lifelong learning. Hence, there is a need for incorporating opportunities for students in the curriculum, to develop these skills.
Aim: To evaluate the feasibility of incorporating teachinglearning activity on reflection early in the undergraduate medical curriculum using research experience as a context, and, to determine whether the reflective skills of students improve upon training.
Materials and Methods: The study was experimental with test and control groups and was conducted at Melaka Manipal Medical College, India. Senior batch of medical students in the second year of the course, about to complete their research project were considered as the test group and subsequent junior batch which was in middle of the research activity was the control. The test group was provided with a teaching-learning activity on reflection. Following this, students were asked to write reflective summary on experience of doing research. The control group who did not receive any training on reflection were also requested to write reflective summaries. Reflective summaries were graded by two authors independently using a newly developed rubric. Later, the grades were designated with scores. Perspective regarding this teaching-learning activity was collected from the test group. Feasibility was examined during teaching-learning activity and assessment. Mean reflective summary scores of control and test groups were expressed as mean±standard deviation and compared using independent samples t-test. A p-value of <0.05 was considered as statistically significant. Inter-rater reliability of the rubric was analyzed using Kappa statistics.
Results: The teaching-learning activity lasted for two hours. It took an average of five minutes for researchers to assess each reflective summary. There was a statistically significant (p<0.001) difference in the mean reflective summary scores between control (26.45±9.43) and test (51.66±6.56) groups. Kappa for inter-rater reliability was 0.784 denoting substantial agreement between two raters. Perceptions revealed acceptability of module (median 4, scale 1-5).
Conclusion: Teaching and assessing reflecting skills among students using research experience as context was feasible. This study demonstrated that students acquire better reflecting skills after undergoing training.