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Early Clinical Exposure to Geriatric Medicine in Second-Year Medical School Students—The McGill Experience

Authors


Address correspondence to Gustavo Duque, MD, Division of Geriatric Medicine, McGill University, 3755 Côte Sainte Catherine, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, H3T 1E2. E-mail: gduque@po-box.mcgill.ca

Abstract

This study examined the effect of a curriculum change on early clinical exposure to geriatrics for second-year medical students at McGill University and its effects on learning and students' appreciation of geriatrics as a subspecialty. Second-year medical students (N = 200) were exposed to a change in the curriculum involving the integration of 10 weekly sessions into one integrated week in geriatric medicine. Students participating in 10 weekly sessions were Group 1 and students participating in one integrated week were Group 2. Students rated their rotation using two different scales. The students completed 12-item questionnaires during their feedback sessions at the end of the 10-week session experience or the integrated week. The first six items assessed the students' appreciation of their improvement of knowledge in the subject of geriatrics and aging. The second and third part of the survey (questions 7 and 8) included the students' opinions about the quality of the instruction (teaching feedback) and evaluation. Students in Group 2 found their rotation more effective as a learning experience and expressed greater satisfaction with interaction with the tutors, community settings, and multidisciplinary team sessions. Grades obtained on final examinations showed a better and more-effective acquisition of knowledge by Group 2. The integrated week is a more-effective learning tool in the early clinical experience for medical students in geriatric medicine than 10 weekly sessions as the first introductory experience to the field of geriatric medicine.

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