Main Article Content
Introduction: Most medical educators agreed that e-Learning is a necessity nowadays and not a luxury shift. Smartphones contribute to the educational process to a great extent. Integrating the use of smartphones in the curriculum has an important innovative role in medical education and health care services. Currently, medical students are using smartphones as part of their daily routine and learning activities. A study guide is a tool designed to facilitate students' interaction with the various components of the curriculum. The idea of using a mobile application in providing information through a study guide to facilitate learning was reported by different studies.
Aims: This study aims at designing, implementing and evaluating smart-phone based study guide using mobile enhanced learning technology for the 1st year medical students at Faculty of Medicine, Suez Canal University (FOM-SCU) in order to enhance students' learning experience.
The Study Objectives: Design a study guide using mobile application for the 1st year medical students. Implement the newly designed study guide on 1st year medical students (2017-2018). Evaluate the students' performance during PBL tutorial sessions before and after implementing Smartphone based study guide. Assess students' satisfaction regarding the study guide application. Identify challenges of using mobile application in medical education.
Study Design: A quasi-experimental (pretest-posttest), using a non-probability convenience sampling, 105 students (response rate 84%), and 16 class tutors (response rate 100%).
Place and Duration of Study: Department of Medical Education, FOM-SCU, Egypt during the academic year 2017-2018.
Methodology: Using a non-probability convenience sampling technique, 105 students (response rate 84%), and 16 class tutors (response rate 100%).
Results: Most of the students (94.3%) stated that smartphone (m-learning) is useful in Medical Education, 80.9% of them agreed that the module objectives can be met through m-learning and 61.9% of the students agreed on recommending m-learning as an innovative method of learning to others. The evaluation of students' performance in the context of Problem Based Learning (PBL) by their class tutors showed a statistically significant improvement in all items regarding the four factors assessed "independent study" (p-value <0.001), "group interaction" (p-value <0.001), "active participation" (p-value <0.001), and "reasoning skills" (p-value <0.001) when comparing pre and post-intervention scores.
Conclusion: This study concludes the m-learning has a positive effect on the students’ performance in the PBL context. It is remarkably significant to integrate smartphone-based learning activities in the undergraduate Medical Education curriculum. Our results can encourage other health professions institutions to apply m-learning in different educational situations.
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