ABSTRACT: Dental and Medical Students’ Use and Perceptions of Learning Resources in a Human Physiology Course.
The aim of this study was to determine the use and perceived utility of various learning resources available during the first-year Integrated Human Physiology course at the dental and medical schools at Harvard University. Dental and medical students of the Class of 2018 were surveyed anonymously online in 2015 regarding their use of 29 learning resources in this combined course. The learning resources had been grouped into four categories to discern frequency of use and perceived usefulness among the categories. The survey was distributed to 169 students, and 73 responded for a response rate of 43.2%. There was no significant difference among the learning resource categories in frequency of use; however, there was a statistically significant difference among categories in students’ perceptions of usefulness. No correlation was found between frequency of use and perceived usefulness of each category. Students seemingly were not choosing the most useful resources for them. These results suggest that, in the current educational environment, where new technologies and self-directed learning are highly sought after, there remains a need for instructor-guided learning.