Friday, 4 April 2008

The Student Becomes the Master

(I wish)

This week a friend and I took it upon ourselves to teach the 4th years. It is approaching the end of the year and therefore exam time for everyone. Thursday afternoon a group of about 15 or so 4th years assembled themselves in the skills lab to be taught obs and gynae for OSCEs. I was taken a little by surprise and consequently hadn't prepared. I ended up going over breast exam, pelvic exam and pregnant abdo exam all from memory. I think it turned out quite well, although who knows what the students thought, it was also very useful revision for me as I learnt things from them too. As you'd expect, they were more interested in what stations had come up previously and any hints and tips for the exam. I tried to emphasise the important things and even collected a list of email addresses to send round some resources.

Today I was slightly more prepared in that I'd read what I was supposed to be doing and prepared handouts. At half 12 there was hardly anyone there but 5 minutes later a group of 20 or so had appeared expecting to learn about orthopaedics and neurology. We split them into two and I took half to 'teach' them cranial nerve examination and neurological examination of limbs. My cranial nerve exam was a bit rusty but again I hope they found it useful, certainly they seemed quite pleased with the handouts which out to make up for any gaps in what we'd taught. In the end we ran out of time so I didn't get chance to go through everything with the second group and by now I'd run out of handouts but lovely person that I am, I took all their email addresses and promptly sent a copy to those who'd missed out.

And so, the students had become the masters. Albeit masters in the very loosest sense of the word. It was more going through the examinations together and pointing out where each other had gone wrong. Nevertheless, teaching this was and a sparkly certificate I shall get. Not only was it good revision for me, I enjoyed the experience. It was refreshing, if rather more difficult than I thought it'd be, to teach other people. The students were quite willing to learn and I wasn't short of volunteers which made things easier. I've never really been a position where people are expecting me to teach them and I did quite enjoy the whole thing, I just hope it was useful for them. I can certainly see why people are obsessed with feedback forms, having done these sessions I can see how difficult it is to assess how useful a session is.

Oh well, I'm sure they at least found the handouts useful.

I look forward to being able to do some more teaching in the future. Apart from surgery, medical education is another interest and I hope to be able to pursue that further.

1 comment:

missbliss said...


I'm still disappointed noone told you, "I'm not focohing doin' it" :(