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Original Research

Effectiveness of case-based learning among medical interns using microbiology laboratory report as a tool

Kumudini Panigrahi, Basanti Kumari Pathi, Nirmala Poddar, Smaranita Sabat, Jayanti Mishra.


Background: Due to lack of consensus of teaching learning methods during undergraduate period, intern doctors face many challenges in clinical settings. Knowledge gaps related to clinical application of laboratory medicine leads to poor case management. Active learner centered training with real clinical cases is a need to help the interns to link their basic science knowledge into a practical context.

Aims and Objectives: The present study was done to evaluate the effect of case based learning (CBL) on the interns’ knowledge and clinical decision-making skill of interpretation of laboratory investigation reports and to assess perception of participants about CBL.

Materials and Methods: CBL method was used to train the interns in clinical application microbiology reports. This is a pre- and post-test type study, carried out for 2 months with 43 Medical interns, willing to participate. The process included evaluation of CBL by pre-validated questionnaires by multiple choice questions, clinical case scenarios before, immediately after and 10 days after the intervention and perception toward CBL was assessed. Statistical analysis was done using Student’s t-test and SPSS 17 software. The value of P < 0.05 was considered as significant.

Results: A significant improvement in the interns’ knowledge and problem solving following CBL sessions had been observed in present study. The post-test scores of all the CBL sessions were significantly higher than pre-test scores (P < 0.05). The perception of interns toward CBL was assessed and it was responded positively. It helped in strengthening the critical skills of interns such as problem solving, critical thinking, and teamwork.

Conclusion: The present study proved that interns during internship require to be trained in laboratory medicine. CBL is an effective teaching method to train interns in enhancing their problem solving skill with correct use of laboratory test results and strengthening critical thinking, teamwork, and time management skills.

Key words: Curriculum; Internship; Learning; Critical Thinking; Medical Education

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