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Pediatr Emerg Care. 2008 May;24(5):284-6. doi: 10.1097/PEC.0b013e31816ecb5c.

Evaluating computer-assisted learning for common pediatric emergency procedures.

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  • 1Division of Emergency Medicine, Department of Information Technology, The Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.



To develop a computer-assisted learning (CAL) model and evaluate its effectiveness in improving medical trainees' knowledge of pediatric emergency procedures.


Three common pediatric emergency procedures were selected: laceration repair, splinting of fractures, and lumbar puncture. Web-based computerized tutorials were developed using digital images, short video clips, and instructional text. The tutorials focused on indications/contraindications of procedure, steps of the procedure, and materials needed. A 20-item multiple-choice examination was developed to test content covered in the tutorials. Twenty-three, third- and fourth-year medical students were randomly assigned to the CAL group or the nonintervention group. The 20-item multiple-choice examination was given to the trainee either before or after completion of the tutorials, based on group assignment. Both groups completed demographic information forms.


The 13 students in the intervention group had a significantly higher average examination score, 16.3 (81.5%) (SD, 2.68), compared with the average score of the nonintervention group, 10.9 (54.5%) (SD, 1.37) (Wilcoxon test P = 0.00001). There was no significant difference between the 2 groups.


The CAL model improves students' knowledge of emergency procedures. This model can be used as an adjuvant to traditional teaching of emergency procedures. Strategies for their optimal use need to be explored and evaluated.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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