The learning experiences of dyslexic medical students during the COVID‑19 pandemic: a phenomenological study

Shaw, Sebastian C K, Hennessy, Laura R and Anderson, John L (2022) The learning experiences of dyslexic medical students during the COVID‑19 pandemic: a phenomenological study. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 27. pp. 107-124. ISSN 1382-4996

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Dyslexia is a Specific Learning Difficulty that impacts on reading and writing abilities. During the COVID-19 pandemic, medical schools have been forced to undertake distance learning and assessment. The wider literature suggested that e-learning might pose additional challenges for dyslexic students. Here we explore their overall experiences of learning/studying during this time in a phenomenological study. Five medical students were interviewed in depth and the audio-recordings were transcribed verbatim. Transcripts then underwent an interpretive phenomenological analysis. Our results highlighted a largely positive experience, with an improved culture of togetherness, freedom and sense of control. They also revealed issues with a lack of clinical exposure, potential negative impacts on ranking positions for those with dyslexia, and possible cheating in exams. There are some surprising results—in particular the positive responses to how remote learning was delivered. These seemed to put our participants more on a par with their non-dyslexic colleagues—except in some examinations. It is our hope that medical educators may resist a return to ‘the way things have always been done’ when the pandemic has resolved, and by doing so, continue to foster this new, positive culture and paradigm shift.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Dyslexia, Medical students, Medical education, Specific learning difficulties, Neurodiversity, Qualitative, Phenomenology, Coronavirus
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Brighton and Sussex Medical School
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2021 07:25
Last Modified: 22 Mar 2022 09:15

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