The Effects of an Online Symptom-Based Learning Method Designed to Enhance Clinical Reasoning: A Qualitative Study
1Department of Medical Education, Karadeniz Technical University, Faculty of Medicine, Trabzon, Türkiye
J Clin Pract Res 2023; 45(6): 589-598 DOI: 10.14744/cpr.2023.44154
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Objective: The ‘Online Symptom-Based Learning (SBL)’ method was developed to support the clinical decision-making processes of students in clinical years, using the Education Man-agement System (EMS) integrated with Zoom. This research aimed to gather the opinions of students and faculty members about the ‘Online SBL’ method applied during the pandemic.
Materials and Methods: This qualitative study involved 34 faculty members using Online SBL and 267 clinical year students from Karadeniz Technical University Faculty of Medicine. The researchers employed a convenience sampling method and selected volunteers for fo-cus group interviews, including 28 clinical year students and 23 faculty members from dif-ferent departments and clinical courses.
Results: Analysis revealed five main themes upon which the researchers agreed: educators’ previous experiences in clinical reasoning, their experiences with SBL, students’ experiences with SBL, the contributions of SBL to education, and suggestions for improving SBL.
Conclusion: The primary findings indicated that SBL improved clinical reasoning skills, pos-itively affected the educational climate during the pandemic, promoted student-centered thinking among educators, and facilitated interdisciplinary collaboration towards common learning objectives. However, challenges included anxiety associated with conducting SBL online, some educators’ persistence in educator-oriented thinking, and difficulties in group assessments. The Online SBL method could be beneficial not only online but also in face-to-face undergraduate education across all health professions.