Medical education trend changing world over

July 09 - 15, 2007

The trend in medical education all over the world is changing from progressive to integrated type of curriculum teaching, therefore, it is imperative for Pakistani medical schools to devise medical courses which boost students' initial enthusiasm for medicine and prepare them adequately for the diversity of problems which they will encounter as professionals. This was averred by Prof Tim Neild from Flinders University School of Medicine, Australia, while addressing the concluding session of the 5-day international workshop on "Integrated Outcome-based Teaching and Learning Concepts" here at the University of Health Sciences (UHS).

Dr. Tim Neild maintained that traditionally the medical course was structured as a progression from the basic sciences to the clinical sciences with little attempt at integration. The exponential growth of medical knowledge and the greatly increased content of the scientific aspect of the curriculum had made the selection of appropriate core content and the integration of basic and clinical sciences important aspects of curricular design, he opined.

He further said that students expectations of both the quality and administration of teaching were higher than in the past and course review and monitoring were becoming established activities in medical schools all over the world. He emphasized the need for a medical course, which would produce doctors with appropriate attitudes to medicine, and learning that would fit them for lifetime of professional self-education.

"Courses emphasising self-directed learning, problem solving and the development of critical thought serve students better than course that demand only passive learning and factual recall," he further opined. Regarding the outcome-based education, he said that it reoriented medical education from a process to a product approach where the end product was principally related to the required and predetermined outcomes.

The workshop was attended by senior faculty members of UHS affiliated medical colleges.