Background: Self-Directed Learning (SDL) skills are required for medical graduates for them to engage in continuous learning during their medical practice. The curriculum which is followed in an institution influences the development of readiness for SDL in a student. Hence, improving the medical student's SDL skills has been accepted as an important goal of the higher education. Aim: To compare the Self-Directed Learning Readiness (SDLR) among medical students who experienced the traditional curriculum with clinical exposure from the 2nd year of the course and among medical students who experienced a partially problem based curriculum. Setting and Design: The Manipal University, India, has 2 medical programmes which run in the Manipal Campus, India. One of these medical programmes follows the traditional curriculum with an early exposure to the clinical from the 2nd year of the course, whereas the other one follows a partially problem based curriculum (hybrid) with clinical exposure from the 3rd year of the course. In this cross sectional study, the SDLR of the students who experienced the above curriculums was compared at the beginning of the 3rd year of the course. Materials and Methods: To obtain the SDLR of the students of the traditional (n=120) and the hybrid (n=120) curriculums, the SDLR scale which was designed by Fischer et al., was suitably modified. The student's response was collected in a five point Likert scale in September 2010. Statistical analysis: The categorical variables were described as median and interquartile range. A total SDLR score of >129 was considered as an indication for the readiness. Appropriate non-parametric tests were used to compare the groups. A p value of <0.017 was considered as statistically significant. Results: There was a statistically significant difference (p = 0.004) in the total median SDLR score between the students of the hybrid 132 (117, 137) and the traditional 137 (128, 144) curriculums. Students from both the groups scored the lowest in self-management, whereas the traditional group scored more in the desire-for-learning (p=0.001) and the self-control (p=0.004) factors as compared to the hybrid group. Conclusions: In the development of SDLR in students, the tradi- tional curriculum with an early clinical exposure seemed to influence them more than the hybrid curriculum which used paper based cases for PBL in the initial years. However, additional support is required for students of the both curriculums in self-management.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Biochemistry