EMCyberSchool An Evaluation of Computer-assisted Instruction on the Internet

Authors

  • Kevin M. Baumlin MD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Emergency Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY (KMB, MJB, CL, LDR).
      ***Dpeartment of Emergency Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, One Gustave L. Levy Place, Box 1620, New York, NY 10029. Fax: 212-426-1946; e-mail: kevin.baumlin@mssm.edu
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  • Michael J. Bessette MD,

    1. Department of Emergency Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY (KMB, MJB, CL, LDR).
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  • Carol Lewis,

    1. Department of Emergency Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY (KMB, MJB, CL, LDR).
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  • Lynne D. Richardson MD

    1. Department of Emergency Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY (KMB, MJB, CL, LDR).
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***Dpeartment of Emergency Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, One Gustave L. Levy Place, Box 1620, New York, NY 10029. Fax: 212-426-1946; e-mail: kevin.baumlin@mssm.edu

Abstract

Abstract. Objectives: To test the hypothesis that integration of the EMCyberSchool, a computer-assisted instruction (CAI) tool available on the Internet, into the curriculum of a senior medical student subinternship in emergency medicine (EM) would improve exam scores and course satisfaction. Methods: Students were prospectively randomized, by four-week blocks, into a CAI group and a no-CAI group. All students were surveyed on previous computer experience and their use and opinion of the EMCyberSchool. Results: Completed data were obtained from 100 of 120 students. Sixty-five percent of the students said they wanted CAI as an adjunct to their course curricula; only 28% actually used the educational tool. The students who used the site rated it useful (4.2/5), easy to use (4.4/5), and easy to access (4.1/5). Of the students who had access, and chose not to use the EMCyberSchool, 77.8% reported not having enough time as the reason for not using the site. The mean exam scores were 72.8% for the students in the CAI group and 68.2% for those in the no-CAI group (p = 0.058). In the CAI group, 77.5% (31/40) of the students rated the course as outstanding or excellent; compared with 66% (33/50) in the no-CAI group (p = 0.23). Conclusions: Although desired, it remains unclear whether CAI on the Internet is a useful adjunct for teaching EM to medical students.

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