Oral Presentations - Instructional Methods 1

Moderated by Joanna Appel
Session Coordinator: Sandra Haudek


Presentation 1 - Staged-Reveal Cases Help Medical Students Learn Histology and Appreciate Microscopic Image Relevance

Thom Gaddy
Augusta University-University of Georgia Medical Partnership


Medical students often struggle with applying principles of histology and microscopic findings to disease processes. We therefore developed a session using a series of cases around the theme of infertility to help students apply content knowledge. Student perceptions of how well this session facilitated their learning were measured.

During curricular planning it was determined that additional support was needed to help students connect concepts about histology and microscopic image interpretation to various etiologies of infertility. A set of staged-reveal cases was developed to highlight how multiple conditions could manifest as infertility. The session was held during Year 1 at the end of a nine-week systems-based Gastrointestinal, Endocrine, and Reproductive systems module. Sixty-one students worked in teams of seven or eight to solve the cases. After each case, a faculty member led a short class-wide debrief session. A six-item questionnaire was administered to collect students' perceptions of the learning activity.

All 61 students in the first-year class participated in the learning activity, and 16 students completed the survey (response rate, ~26%). Students rated each of the following statements on a 5-point Likert scale (1=strongly disagree to 5=strongly agree): (1) This activity helped me to review principles of reproductive biology [mean 4.44, SD 0.79], (2) This activity helped me to integrate clinical findings and basic science knowledge [mean 4.44, SD 0.86], (3) The break-out sessions during this activity provided a valuable opportunity to learn from my peers [mean 4.0, SD 1.17], (4) Using the microscopes provided an opportunity to enhance my microscope skills [mean 4.0, SD 1.06], and (5) I found this activity to be engaging [mean 4.31, SD 1.04]. Written comments were overwhelmingly favorable.

This study indicates that students value learning histology and microscopic image interpretation when paired with staged-reveal cases to illustrate relevance. Next steps include publishing these cases in a peer-reviewed educational repository.

Presentation 2 - Factors Impacting Group Cohesion in the Gross Anatomy Lab
Marrisa Cox    
Michigan State University

Collaborative learning is increasingly employed as an instructional modality in undergraduate medical education. Peer-to-peer teaching leads to a deeper understanding and clarification of misconceptions. Collaborative learning success depends on group dynamics, which may be impacted by several factors. A previous study on two-stage assessment in MSU-CHM gross anatomy lab revealed inter-campus differences in group experiences, notably related to group cohesion. Here, we use a mixed-method approach to explore the factors impacting group dynamics and student perception of collaborative learning at each campus.

Students in the class of 2025 and 2026 were invited to complete a survey about their gross anatomy experience at the end of their first year. Responses were analyzed to identify patterns within and between cohorts, campuses, and performance quartiles. A subset of survey respondents were then invited to participate in a semi-structured focused interview to further investigate recurring themes from the survey data. Thematic analysis was performed to identify themes characteristic of both cohorts and campuses, as well as themes unique to each group.

Survey results indicate students had diverse group experiences and an intercampus difference was detected. Thematic analysis revealed that group dynamics are impacted by interpersonal relationships, previous anatomy experience, self-confidence, and interest in anatomy. Environmental factors, such as classroom layout and faculty behavior, contribute to group splintering, inter-campus differences in group dynamics, and overall learning experience.

Collaborative learning relies on active and productive discussion among students and a favorable group dynamic. Our study found that group dynamics may be affected by several factors, particularly interpersonal relationships and the learning environment. By helping students develop positive relationships among group members and encouraging group cohesion during class, medical educators can foster a successful collaborative learning environment resulting in increased understanding of topics and overall satisfaction.

Presentation 3 - Closing Kolb's Cycle: An Innovative OSCE 360 Method
Laura Nelson    
University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine

Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) has been used in healthcare education for decades. Traditionally, OSCE is used to assess learners’ patient history taking, physical examination and management, communication skills, data interpretation, and clinical procedures. OSCE allows learners to apply their knowledge and analytical/deductive skills to solve clinical problems. OSCE represents a major part of Kolb’s cycle of experiential learning; however, it misses a very important component: knowledge synthesis. USD SSOM has developed and implemented an innovative OSCE method that addresses that deficiency and closes Kolb’s cycle. Developing OSCE-style cases enhances medical students’ meta-cognitive processes and improves knowledge internalization.

USD SSOM requires MS2 students to develop an OSCE-style clinical scenario that is graded by the course director. Student-developed OSCE scenarios are used in a series of 360-degree OSCE (OSCE 360) experiences. During these experiences, the student-author of the scenario serves as a simulated patient for the case they wrote, the second student serves as a student-physician, and the third student serves as a student-examiner. Student-examiner performs assessment and feedback to the student-physician, and student-patient provides feedback from the patient’s standpoint. The entire activity is observed by a clinical faculty member, and each participant is graded. OSCE 360 experiences occur once a week, and learners rotate in their roles. Students’ performances in each role are assessed and graded by clinical faculty and peers. At the end of the course, students are assessed with a course-specific survey.

A rich data set has been obtained during implementation and several iterations of the course. The data have been analyzed and preliminary results demonstrate correlations between learners’ deductive and constructive skills as well as high satisfaction with the course.

OSCE 360 is an innovative educational method that closes Kolb’s cycle of experiential learning and extends the scope of OSCE use.

Date & Time
Sunday, June 11, 2023, 3:45 PM - 4:45 PM
Location Name
MC - Maya 4