MANUSCRIPT: Moving Knowledge Acquisition From the Lecture Hall to the Student Home: A Prospective Intervention Study
Podcasts are popular with medical students, but the impact of podcast use on learning outcomes in undergraduate medical education has not been studied in detail.
Our aim was to assess the impact of podcasts accompanied by quiz questions and lecture attendance on short- and medium-term knowledge retention.
Students enrolled for a cardio-respiratory teaching module were asked to prepare for 10 specific lectures by watching podcasts and submitting answers to related quiz questions before attending live lectures. Performance on the same questions was assessed in a surprise test and a retention test.
Watching podcasts and submitting answers to quiz questions (versus no podcast/quiz use) was associated with significantly better test performance in all items in the surprise test and 7 items in the retention test. Lecture attendance (versus no attendance) was associated with higher test performance in 3 items and 1 item, respectively. In a linear regression analysis adjusted for age, gender, and overall performance levels, both podcast/quiz use and lecture attendance were significant predictors of student performance. However, the variance explained by podcast/quiz use was greater than the variance explained by lecture attendance in the surprise test (38.7% vs. 2.2%) and retention test (19.1% vs. 4.0%).
When used in conjunction with quiz questions, podcasts have the potential to foster knowledge acquisition and retention over and above the effect of live lectures