A multicentre analysis of approaches to learning and student experiences of learning anatomy online

Stone, Danya, Longhurst, Georga J, Dulohery, Kate, Campbell, Thomas, Richards, Annalise, O'Brien, Dominic, Franchi, Thomas, Hall, Samuel and Border, Scott (2022) A multicentre analysis of approaches to learning and student experiences of learning anatomy online. Medical Science Educator, 32. pp. 1117-1130. ISSN 2156-8650

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Introduction: The approaches to learning students adopt when learning anatomy online could yield important lessons for educators. Dissection room teaching can encourage students to adopt a deep approach to learning anatomy. It was therefore hypothesized that the proportion of students adopting a deep approach to learning would be lower in a population learning anatomy online. This research aims to investigate the experiences of students learning anatomy online during the COVID-19 pandemic and the approaches to learning they adopted.

Methods: A survey was distributed to medical students at 7 universities across the UK and Ireland. The survey included two previously validated questionnaires: Approaches and Study Skills Inventory for Students and Anatomy Learning Experience Questionnaire.

Results: The analysis included 224 unique student responses. Students’ approach to learning mirrored reports from previous studies conducted during face-to-face tuition with 44.3% adopting deep, 40.7% strategic, 11.4% surface, and 3.6% combined learning approaches. The university (p = 0.019) and changes to formative (p = 0.016) and summative (p = 0.009) assessments significantly impacted approach to learning. Students reported that online resources were effective but highlighted the need for clearer guidance on how to find and use them successfully.

Conclusion: It is important to highlight that students value in-person opportunities to learn from human cadaveric material and hence dissection room sessions should remain at the forefront of anatomical education. It is recommended that future online and/or blended provisions of anatomy teaching include varied resources that maximize engagement with media featuring cadaveric specimens.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Anatomy education, Approach to learning, Blended learning, COVID-19, Distance learning, Remote learning
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Division of Medical Education
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2022 12:31
Last Modified: 10 Nov 2022 12:45
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/108952

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