Aim: To create a learning experience which enhances clinical competence by encouraging critical appraisal and accurate self-assessment.
Method: Strategies for enhancing participants’ appraisal skills included:
• preparation of a “case study” to demonstrate clinical decision making in primary practice
• self-evaluation of that case study according to a pre-determined framework.
• critiquing of case studies prepared by peers. All participants were provided with a set of guidelines for case selection, case preparation and case evaluation. Each participant prepared one case study and critiqued two others. Student anonymity was ensured by means of cases and critiques being identified through examination numbers rather than names.
Results: From the student perspective the case preparation aspect of this learning experience was well accepted. The student response to peer-evaluation was more guarded while only one third of respondents considered that the self-assessment component of the exercise may potentially contribute to their development as independent learners. From the lecturer’s perspective the total exercise was worthwhile despite certain logistic difficulties. Recommendations for modifying the learning experience have been included.
Conclusions: By encouraging reflective clinical decision making and engaging participants in self- and peer performance appraisal, this format creates a learning framework which provides an opportunity for students to enhance their ability to undertake critical appraisal in a context relevant to their future professional practice.
This abstract is reproduced with the permission of the publisher. Click on the above link for free full text.