• Users Online: 227
  • Print this page
  • Email this page


 
 Table of Contents  
SHORT COMMUNICATION
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 45-47

Self-directed learning in medical education and its implementation in medical schools


1 Medical Education Unit Coordinator and Member of the Institute Research Council, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth—Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth—Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission03-Jan-2022
Date of Acceptance21-Feb-2022
Date of Web Publication18-Apr-2022

Correspondence Address:
Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava
Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV)—Deemed to be University, Thiruporur–Guduvancherry Main Road, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District 603108, Tamil Nadu
India
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ajoim.ajoim_1_22

Rights and Permissions
  Abstract 

The delivery of medical education is a complex process, wherein we aim toward not only the acquisition of desired knowledge and skills, but also creating a system and cadre of healthcare personnel who possess the traits of being professional, leader, team-worker, and a lifelong learner. Self-directed learning (SDL) has been regarded as an important aspect of lifelong learning and is one of the core competencies expected of a medical graduate. Most of the regulatory bodies across the globe strongly advocate for the inclusion of SDL activities within the medical school curriculum. The overall process of implementation and faculty training can be supervised by the Medical Education Unit of the institution, along with the members of the Curriculum Committee and phase-wise faculty members. In conclusion, SDL is an essential attribute to ensure lifelong learning among medical students. Considering the wide range of benefits associated with SDL, it is crucial that all the steps are planned and implemented in a systematic manner to enable successful implementation.

Keywords: Lifelong learning, medical education, self-directed learning


How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Self-directed learning in medical education and its implementation in medical schools. Assam J Intern Med 2022;12:45-7

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Self-directed learning in medical education and its implementation in medical schools. Assam J Intern Med [serial online] 2022 [cited 2022 May 21];12:45-7. Available from: http://www.ajimedicine.com/text.asp?2022/12/1/45/343435


  Introduction Top


The delivery of medical education is a complex process, wherein we aim toward not only the acquisition of desired knowledge and skills, but also creating a system and cadre of healthcare personnel who possess the traits of being professional, leader, team-worker, and a lifelong learner.[1] In general, every healthcare professional has to not only discharge their roles but also look for ways to improve them each day. This becomes the need of the hour considering the fact that medical knowledge continues to expand at an exponential speed, and this makes it critical for every medical student to remain committed to lifelong learning.[1],[2] In fact, training imparted during the undergraduate period to medical students is just the beginning, and a lot remains to be learned further in the future.[1],[2]


  Self-directed Learning in Medical Education Top


Self-directed learning (SDL) has been regarded as an important aspect of lifelong learning and is one of the core competencies expected of a medical graduate.[2],[3] In general, SDL is a learner-centered strategy, wherein the learner is responsible for the initiative by identifying their learning needs, accordingly establishing the goals and decisions about the required learning materials, and the specific strategies to learn and subsequently evaluate the status of the learning outcomes.[3],[4] In order to promote the inclusion of SDL activities, the faculty members have to assume the role of a facilitator and not of a lecturer and thereby adapt accordingly.[2],[3],[4]

Most of the regulatory bodies across the globe strongly advocate for the inclusion of SDL activities within the medical school curriculum, and it is the responsibility of the curriculum planners and faculty members to ensure its seamless inclusion and implementation.[3] In fact, in the recently introduced competency-based undergraduate curriculum, specific hours have been allocated to SDL in each professional year, and the same is being regularly monitored. The available evidence suggests that apart from improving the learning outcomes owing to the adherence with the adult learning principles, when compared with the conventional teaching–learning approach, SDL plays an important role in reducing the number of demotivated medical undergraduate students.[1],[2],[3],[4]


  Implementation of SDL Top


The process of implementation of SDL activities in a medical college essentially begins with ascertaining the need for the same among students.[5] This means assessing the readiness of medical students to go for SDL activities and being ready with the thought that they are themselves accountable for their individual learning, progression, and evaluation.[5],[6] Once the readiness and need for the same have been arrived at, the next step is to set appropriate learning goals (which are more of intended learning objectives and should be framed in an objective and measurable manner).[3],[4] The subsequent step is to identify the topics and frame the relevant questions in terms of knowledge and skills acquisition that students should be able to answer after the SDL activity. These framed questions should not only target the recall level but also make the students focus on higher cognitive domain skills. There is always a scope to plan these activities that envisage teamwork and make the students reflect upon the entire given SDL activity.[2],[3],[4],[5]

Further, the learning resources should also be identified that will aid the students to accomplish the set goals. At the same time, it becomes a must that the sequence of learning events is explicitly specified, including the timeline by which the learning objectives have to be met.[1],[4] As always said, no kind of teaching–learning will deliver the desired results unless it is supplemented with an assessment, and it is very crucial to plan for formative assessments (to assess the learning progression) and summative assessment.[7] The learning process is not complete unless the teacher gives feedback to the students about their performance, the areas in which they did well, and the areas which require attention from their side to gradually accomplish the learning objectives.[3],[5],[6]


  Additional Considerations Top


For better learning outcomes from an SDL session, students should understand their learning process, the approach that they adopt to attain the set target, and should have an idea about the background of the topic.[6] It is always encouraged that a student should maintain a logbook or portfolio to document their learning and this will significantly aid in the process of deep learning.[8] From the teachers’ perspective, it is extremely crucial that they are sensitized about SDL, the scope and need of SDL in the learning process, and the ways which they can adopt to encourage more SDL among medical students.[7],[9] The overall process of implementation and faculty training can be supervised by the Medical Education Unit of the Institution, along with the members of the Curriculum Committee and phase-wise faculty members.


  Conclusion Top


In conclusion, SDL is an essential attribute to ensure lifelong learning among medical students. Considering the wide range of benefits associated with SDL, it is crucial that all the steps are planned and implemented in a systematic manner to enable successful implementation.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

Authors’ contribution

SRS contributed in the conception or design of the work, drafting of the work, approval of the final version of the manuscript, and agreed for all aspects of the work.

PSS contributed in the literature review, revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content, approval of the final version of the manuscript, and agreed for all aspects of the work.



 
  References Top

1.
Pai KM, Rao KR, Punja D, Kamath A The effectiveness of self-directed learning (SDL) for teaching physiology to first-year medical students. Australas Med J 2014;7:448-53.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Patra S, Khan AM, Upadhyay MK, Sharma R, Rajoura OP, Bhasin SK Module to facilitate self-directed learning among medical undergraduates: Development and implementation. J Educ Health Promot 2020;9:231.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Röcker N, Lottspeich C, Braun LT, Lenzer B, Frey J, Fischer MR, et al. Implementation of self-directed learning within clinical clerkships. GMS J Med Educ 2021;38:Doc43.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Ryznar E, Hamaoka D, Lloyd RB Pilot study of an online self-directed learning module for medical decision-making capacity. Acad Psychiatry 2020;44:408-12.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Sahoo S Finding self-directed learning readiness and f ostering self-directed learning through weekly assessment of self-directed learning topics during undergraduate clinical training in ophthalmology. Int J Appl Basic Med Res 2016;6:166-9.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Kidane HH, Roebertsen H, van der Vleuten CPM Students’ perceptions towards self-directed learning in Ethiopian medical schools with new innovative curriculum: A mixed-method study. BMC Med Educ 2020;20:7.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Monroe KS The relationship between assessment methods and self-directed learning readiness in medical education. Int J Med Educ 2016;7:75-80.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
van Schaik S, Plant J, O’Sullivan P Promoting self-directed learning through portfolios in undergraduate medical education: The mentors’ perspective. Med Teach 2013;35:139-44.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Hill M, Peters M, Salvaggio M, Vinnedge J, Darden A Implementation and evaluation of a self-directed learning activity for first-year medical students. Med Educ Online 2020;25:1717780.  Back to cited text no. 9
    




 

Top
 
 
  Search
 
Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
Access Statistics
Email Alert *
Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)

 
  In this article
   Abstract
    Introduction
Self-directed Le...
Implementation o...
Additional Consi...
    Conclusion
   References

 Article Access Statistics
    Viewed231    
    Printed6    
    Emailed0    
    PDF Downloaded26    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal


[TAG2]
[TAG3]
[TAG4]