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Minimal effects of reduced teaching hours on undergraduate medical student learning outcomes and course evaluations

Choi-Lundberg, DL ORCID: 0000-0002-3594-8585, Al-Aubaidy, HAM ORCID: 0000-0001-9564-0120, Burgess, J ORCID: 0000-0003-4748-9571, Clifford, CA ORCID: 0000-0001-7613-7888, Cuellar, WA ORCID: 0000-0003-0374-9335, Errey, JA, Harper, AJ ORCID: 0000-0002-7980-1438, Malley, RC ORCID: 0000-0002-3289-5270, Ross, RM ORCID: 0000-0001-8361-2712, Williams, A-MM ORCID: 0000-0002-1545-174X and Hays, R ORCID: 0000-0002-3875-3134 2019 , 'Minimal effects of reduced teaching hours on undergraduate medical student learning outcomes and course evaluations' , Medical Teacher , pp. 1-8 , doi: 10.1080/0142159X.2019.1652258.

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Abstract

Introduction: Various pressures exist for curricular change, including economic forces, burgeoning knowledge, broadening learning outcomes, and improving quality and outcomes of learning experiences. In an Australian 5-year undergraduate medical course, staff were asked to reduce teaching hours by 20% to alleviate perceived overcrowded preclinical curriculum, achieve operating efficiencies and liberate time for students' self-directed learning. Methods: A case study design with mixed methods was used to evaluate outcomes. Results: Teaching hours were reduced by 198 hours (14%) overall, lectures by 153 hours (19%) and other learning activities by 45 hours (7%). Summative assessment scores did not change significantly after the reductions: 0.4% increase, 1.5% decrease and 1.7% increase in Years 1, 2 and 3, respectively. The percentage of students successfully completing their academic year did not change significantly: 94.4% before and 93.3% after the reductions. Student evaluations from eVALUate surveys changed little, except workload was perceived to be more reasonable. Conclusions: Teaching hours, particularly lectures, can be moderately reduced with little impact on student learning outcomes or satisfaction with an undergraduate medical course.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Choi-Lundberg, DL and Al-Aubaidy, HAM and Burgess, J and Clifford, CA and Cuellar, WA and Errey, JA and Harper, AJ and Malley, RC and Ross, RM and Williams, A-MM and Hays, R
Keywords: undergraduate (phase of education), evaluation (curriculum), educational environment (curriculum), learning outcomes, medicine (profession), medical students, curriculum development, learning environment, engagement in learning
Journal or Publication Title: Medical Teacher
Publisher: Carfax Publishing
ISSN: 0142-159X
DOI / ID Number: 10.1080/0142159X.2019.1652258
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis GroupThis is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Medical teacher, on 22 August 2019, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/0142159X.2019.1652258

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