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Student Perceptions of an Online Post Graduate Course in Family Medicine in Sri Lanka

Author(s): R. E. E. de Silva | J Fernando | D. R. N. Sumanasekera | S. D. Liyanagama Mail

Journal: Sri Lanka Journal of Bio-Medical Informatics
ISSN 2012-6077

Volume: 1;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 205;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Online medical education | Family Medicine | Postgraduate diploma | Student perceptions.

BackgroundThe online Diploma course in Family Medicine (DFM) of the Post Graduate Institute of Medicine (PGIM) of the University of Colombo is one of the pioneering online post graduate medical courses in Sri Lanka.ObjectivesTo describe student perceptions on the online DFM course.MethodsThe study population comprised of all the students (19) of the first batch of the course. Pre- tested self administered questionnaires were administered to all students. A Likert scale was used to assess the domains of teaching, learning, levels of understanding, and technical problems. The scale ranged from 1= ["poor / not useful/did not understand"] to 5= ["excellent/ very useful/ understood very well"]. A focus group discussion was carried out to strengthen the student perceptions, based on the themes which emerged.ResultsResponse rate was 98.4%. Levels of understanding the lessons were perceived to be high with an average of 4.8. Students were of the opinion that discussions and assignments helped them to engage in active learning. Online discussions were found to be the most useful form of learning. 88% commented that they are able to link clinical work to their online course work.ConclusionsThis online course has been useful in improving student knowledge and the levels of understanding of individual lessons are satisfactory. The most useful form of learning appeared to be online discussions.
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