Departmental Bulletin Paper Can Hybrid Educational Activities of Team and Problem Based Learning Program be Effective for Japanese Medical Students?

Iwata, Kentaro  ,  Doi, Asako

63 ( 2 )  , pp.51 - 57 , 2017 , 神戸大学医学部
Background: The purpose of this study is to investigate the medical students’ perceptions of the Hybrid Educational Activities between team based learning (TBL) and problem based learning (PBL) Program (HEATAPP), a novel educational program that combines characteristics of PBL and TBL. Methods: A five-day HEATAPP on infectious diseases was provided to 4th year medical students at Kobe University School of Medicine, Kobe, Japan. After the program, a focus group discussion was held among 6 medical students who participated in HEATAPP. We qualitatively analyzed the recorded data to delineate the effectiveness of, and the perceptions on, HEATAPP. Results: Some students considered HEATAPP being effective as an active learning, and in developing questions. However, some students found active learning difficult to execute, since they were so familiar with passive learning such as lectures and examinations. They also found it difficult to identify important points by reading authentic textbooks on given issues, particularly English textbooks. Conclusions: Even though active learning and group discussion are underscored as important in medicine, some Japanese medical students may be reluctant to shift towards these since they are so used to passive learning since childhood. English language is another barrier to active learning. The introduction of active learning in the earlier stages of education might be an effective solution. Teachers at medical schools in Japan should be mindful of the students’ potentially negative attitudes towards active learning, which is claimed to be successful in western countries.

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