International Journal of Clinical Medicine

Volume 7, Issue 11 (November 2016)

ISSN Print: 2158-284X   ISSN Online: 2158-2882

Google-based Impact Factor: 0.69  Citations  h5-index & Ranking

How do Medical Students Learn?

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DOI: 10.4236/ijcm.2016.711085    1,664 Downloads   3,006 Views  Citations


Background & Objectives: In this paper, we try to define learning, to describe how retention of memorized material can be improved and to describe how to help students improve clinical reasoning and problem solving skills. The goal of teaching is to improve learning, but how do we know that students are learning in the proper way? Methods: We depend on our experience in medical and clinical teaching of our undergraduate and postgraduate students during implementation of the curriculum. We interview 1st year (preclinical) and 6th year medical students by certain questionnaires (VARK) in order to know their learning methods and their knowledge about the styles of learning and the techniques of learning. Learning is viewed here as developing a way of thinking and acting that is a characteristic of an expert physician. Such a way of thinking consists of three important elements: We utilize Working Memory in 3 main approaches: First, attention in a way through questions, focus attention and uses of first letter of statement of the word; Second, rule of 7 (Teach < 7 steps); Third, concentration on important relevant materials. We have to keep in our mind that even if we remember something, it doesn't mean we understand it. In addition, the case learning approach & problem solving learning approach are the methods used and we try to be cooperative, active, and experimental and the student must be self directed and the students should be competent in his learning methods, most are confident of their ability. Results: Most of the first year students have poor knowledge in regards to style & learning techniques. For final year students around 30% learn two styles and 20% trimodel, especially more in female students, 10% mention single model in their learning and the remaining learn by Quad modals. In conclusion, learning how to learn must be a standard part of the curriculum in medical school, and student must be aware of that.

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Makki Alshok, M. (2016) How do Medical Students Learn?. International Journal of Clinical Medicine, 7, 792-799. doi: 10.4236/ijcm.2016.711085.

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