Medical librarians as developers of courses in evidence based medicine
The PhD study programme at Palacky University Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry (Olomouc, Czech Republic) is open to any University graduates with the intention to improve their qualifications in theoretical, preclinical and clinical medical specialties. The paper will demonstrate a role of medical librarians in teaching evidence-based medicine and online courseware development.
PhD students start with the Essential Introductory Course, consisting of 14 modules/2 credits each. They select topics according to their field of interest to get at least 8 credits. Four modules are related to evidence-based practice, and two of them, B001 - Information retrieval and B006 - Evidence-based medicine have long been taught with the input of medical library staff.
The increasing demand to acquire EBM knowledge has triggered an initiative to innovate the two EBM-related modules.
A new design of the modules was laid out by a multiprofessional team (medical teacher, librarian, IT specialist, PhD programme manager) to comply with a blended learning methodology. Four contact hours are supported with online study materials and interactive activities accessible on Moodle at http://biomedicine.upol.cz/moodle. Module B001 is focused on developing search skills to get the best evidence from multiple resources, including library catalogues, deep web, bibliographic databases, and point of care information summaries.
In both courses, online materials consist of text descriptions of the clinical scenario, information resources, EBM history, theory, methods and apps, audio synched across powerpoint, and additional reading links. A bridge over modules B001 and B006 is the clinical question dealing with treatment modalities of monosymptomatic nocturnal enuresis in school children. To complete module B006 the trainees have to critically appraise a randomized controlled trial using an interactive form and submit their solutions before the course.
The main points of the critical appraisal are then summarized by the facilitators during workshop.
The blended learning approach has proven practical, more efficient, attractive and time-saving for teaching & learning EBM skills than mere contact hours used before.
The first group of PhD students (n=39) completed the newly designed module in June 2011, all of them passed and got their credits. A survey demonstrated both high perceived value of the course and level of satisfaction.
In 2012 the modules are slated for January and June and the expected total number of survey respondents will be up to 120.
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