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Teaching Medical Students How to Interpret Chest X-Rays: The Design and Development of an e-Learning Resource

Authors Sait S, Tombs M

Received 8 September 2020

Accepted for publication 15 December 2020

Published 5 February 2021 Volume 2021:12 Pages 123—132


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Md Anwarul Azim Majumder

Saif Sait,1 Michal Tombs2

1Postgraduate Medical & Dental Education Department, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK; 2Centre for Medical Education, School of Medicine, Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales, UK

Correspondence: Michal Tombs
Centre for Medical Education, School of Medicine, Cardiff University, Heath Park, Cardiff, Wales, CF14 4YS, UK
Tel +44 2920 68743

Introduction: The teaching of radiology to medical students has often been criticised for being inadequate and unstructured, with students reporting lack of confidence in assessing x-rays. In this paper, we describe how an e-learning resource, on how to interpret a chest x-ray for medical students, was designed and developed. The aim of the resource was to provide medical students with knowledge of how to interpret a chest x-ray in a systematic approach.
Methods: The technology used to design the e-learning resource was Xerte Online Toolkits. The design and development of the e-learning resource was based upon andragogical principles and followed Overbaugh’s guidelines and Mayer’s 12 multimedia principles. An instructional design model called ADDIE was used to help develop the resource and its content. These included cases of common conditions, a quiz and summary table at the end. The paper focuses mainly on the way in which instructional design, education and multimedia principles were used to inform the development of the resource.
Findings: A preliminary evaluation was completed by 18 medical students from year 3– 5 who completed the e-learning resource. The feedback was positive with an average rating of 9/10 and 100% of students saying they would recommend the resource to a colleague. Students commented that they liked the resource as it was easy to navigate, had good visual learning and contained good explanations with relevant content.
Conclusion and Future Implications: This paper demonstrates how, with the use of instructional models, educational theories and principles, an e-learning resource can be created. Preliminary evaluation showed that students were satisfied with the resource and felt it helped them acquire knowledge on how to interpret chest x-rays. This resource can be further utilized either as a standalone resource or before starting clinical placements and may prove particularly useful in the current and challenging learning environment where there is an increased need for digital resources.

Keywords: instructional design, educational principles, learning outcomes, radiology, medical students, e-learning

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