ABSTRACT: E-Learning in Urology: Implementation of the Learning and Teaching Platform CASUS
E-learning is playing an increasing role in medical education, supporting a problem-based and practical oriented education without putting patients at risk and compensating for the decrease in instructor-centered teaching. Not much research has been done concerning learning effects and reaction on behalf of the students.
We created computer-based cases for four important diagnoses in urology using the authoring system CASUS®. Fourth-year medical school students were randomized into two groups: (1) the CASUS® group, using the online cases for preparation, and (2) the book group, using a textbook. A multiple-choice test referring to the prepared topic had to be completed at the beginning of each lecture and the results were analyzed. Evaluation of the students concerning the acceptance of the program was done at the end of the semester.
Members of the CASUS® group scored significantly higher with an average of 20% better test results than students using textbooks for preparation. Evaluation regarding the program showed a highly positive rating. Limitations include the small study population and the possibly biased test performance of the students.
Computerized patient cases facilitate practice-oriented teaching and result in an interesting and engaging learning model with improved learning outcomes.
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