Student perceptions of a web-based package for teaching medical prescription writing and its effectiveness in improving student assessment outcomes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Computer-assisted learning is recognised as an effective teaching tool; however student perceptions of its effectiveness in teaching prescription writing and impact on student outcomes are not well established. Objective: To evaluate the acceptability and effectiveness of a web-based education package - the National Prescribing Curriculum (NPC); hosted by the National Prescribing Service (NPS) as a tool to teach prescription writing and to improve student assessment outcomes. Subjects: All 2005 4th year undergraduate medical students, the University of Western Australia (UWA). Methods: Information was collected from two survey questionnaires about student perceptions of the NPC (prior to and post-completion), annual student NPC usage (number of student log-ons) and UWA student assessment outcomes (multiple-choice questions (MCQ) and a prescription writing task). Results: 85% of students rated the NPC positively (Likert Scale 3). There was a significant increase in the relative contribution of NPC to student learning (p = 0.003) following the completion of the NPC series of cases. Student NPC usage was positively associated with improvement in MCQ assessment outcomes for the first two cases (r = 0.202, p = 0.018 and r = 0.184, p = 0.043, respectively). Overall, there was no association between student NPC usage as measured by site hits and the prescription writing assessment outcomes. Conclusion: Web-based education packages are an acceptable method of learning to write prescriptions, although their role in improving student outcomes is yet to be clearly established.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-85
JournalFocus on Health Professional Education: a Multi-Disciplinary Journal
Volume9
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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