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J Patient Saf. 2012 Mar;8(1):26-9. doi: 10.1097/PTS.0b013e31823d0661.

Measuring the effectiveness of pharmacology teaching in undergraduate medical students.

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  • 1Office of the Secretary General, Mexico City, Mexico.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Information overload and recent curricular changes are viewed as important contributory factors to insufficient pharmacological education of medical students. This study was designed to assess the effectiveness of pharmacology teaching in our medical school.

METHODS:

The study subjects were 455 second-year medical students, class of 2010, and 26 pharmacology teachers at the National University of Mexico Medical School. To assess pharmacological knowledge, students were required to take 3 multiple-choice exams (70 questions each) as part of their evaluation in the pharmacology course. A 30-item questionnaire was used to explore the students' opinion on teaching. Pharmacology professors evaluated themselves using a similar questionnaire. Students and teachers rated each statement on a 5-point Likert scale.

RESULTS:

The groups' exam scores ranged from 54.5% to 90.0% of correct responses, with a mean score of 77.3%. Only 73 (16%) of 455 students obtained an exam score of 90% and higher. Students' evaluations of faculty and professor self-ratings were very high (90% and 96.2%, of the maximal response, respectively). Student and professor ratings were not correlated with exam scores (r = 0.291).

CONCLUSIONS:

Our study shows that knowledge on pharmacology is incomplete in a large proportion of second-year medical students and indicates that there is an urgent need to review undergraduate training in pharmacology. The lack of relationship between the subjective ratings of teacher effectiveness and objective exam scores suggests the use of more demanding measures to assess the effectiveness of teaching.

PMID:
22139044
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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