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Cover page of the Journal of Health Sciences


 
 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 197-201

Perspective of medical students on online teaching-learning process during COVID-19 pandemic


1 Department of Biochemistry, Ashwini Rural Medical College, Hospital and Research Centre, Solapur, Maharashtra, India
2 Department of Microbiology, Ashwini Rural Medical College, Hospital and Research Centre, Solapur, Maharashtra, India

Date of Submission06-Jul-2020
Date of Acceptance19-Aug-2020
Date of Web Publication05-Oct-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Shree Vinayak Dhotre
Department of Microbiology, Ashwini Rural Medical College, Hospital and Research Centre, Kumbhari, Solapur - 413 006, Maharashtra
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/kleuhsj.kleuhsj_235_20

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  Abstract 

Context: In India, responses to the COVID-19 pandemic in medical education resulted in closures of medical colleges and adoption of online teaching-learning methods, which is challenging for both faculty and students.
Aim and Objectives: The aim of this study is to know the perspectives of medical students on online teaching-learning method and to evaluate the efficacy of online teaching-learning process.
Subjects and Methods: One hundred students of the first MBBS course were included in the study. The present study was conducted in a form of online survey using Google forms.
Results: A total of 97 students participated willingly in the study, among the participants 56% were satisfied, 32% remained neutral, and 12% were dissatisfied regarding class curriculum. Student's feedback on knowledge gained through online methods was that, 59% students felt to be useful; however, 41% felt to be not enough. When finally, the student's responses on the comparison of online teaching learning method versus traditional teaching-learning methods were obtained, it was observed that majority 75% felt that traditional teaching-learning methods are better; whereas 17% felt online classes may be better and 8% felt online methods are excellent.
Conclusion: Online teaching is beneficial, but students prefer traditional teaching-learning method over it. However, in view of the current situation, students by and large have accepted the online teaching-learning method with a greater goal of gaining knowledge.

Keywords: COVID-19, online teaching-learning, questionnaire


How to cite this article:
Dhotre PS, Shaikh AK, Dhotre SV. Perspective of medical students on online teaching-learning process during COVID-19 pandemic. Indian J Health Sci Biomed Res 2020;13:197-201

How to cite this URL:
Dhotre PS, Shaikh AK, Dhotre SV. Perspective of medical students on online teaching-learning process during COVID-19 pandemic. Indian J Health Sci Biomed Res [serial online] 2020 [cited 2020 Oct 28];13:197-201. Available from: https://www.ijournalhs.org/text.asp?2020/13/3/197/297189


  Introduction Top


In late 2019, multiple cases of pneumonia of unknown etiology were observed in the city of Wuhan in Hubei province in China.[1] Soon, following genomic sequencing, it was found that these cases were caused by a novel virus, which was called severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) coronavirus-2.[2],[3],[4] This coronavirus infection (COVID-19) spread throughout the world, leading to the World Health Organization declaring it a global pandemic.[4],[5] Globally, everything has stopped. Projects have been delayed; workplaces closed, and schools shut down.

In an effort to restrict the spread of this disease, Government of India imposed total lockdown in March 2020. The lockdown came into force at midnight local time on March 24, 2020 and was enforced for 21 days.[5],[6],[7]

Tencent classroom meanwhile has been used extensively since mid-February after the Chinese Government instructed a quarter of a billion full-time students to resume their studies through online platforms. This resulted in the largest “online movement” in the history of education with approximately 81% of students attending classes through various online modes.[8]

Similarly, in our country, students continued their education through online learning and through video calls with their teachers, especially in medical education. The model is currently the best alternative as keeping colleges open poses a safety risk for students.

The traditional teaching method gives full play of the teacher's leading role and enables the student to obtain more knowledge.[9],[10] Along with the traditional teaching methods, modern teaching methods such as case-based learning, video-based learning, seminars; demonstrations play a pivotal role for overall understanding of medical subjects and its application in the clinical medicine.[11] However, the current COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to switch from the traditional method of medical education to the online method of teaching-learning in medical college. However, medical college responses to these sudden lockdowns caused by COVID-19 are not well documented in the literature, and there are few works that summarize the response to epidemics such as SARS outbreak. In 2007, some Chinese medical schools responded to SARS by shifting to online tutorial sessions,[12] while in 2003, Chinese medical schools cancelled bedside teaching and delayed their examinations.[13] The Canadian response to SARS included the suspension of clinical clerkships and electives for students for up to 6 weeks.[14] In view of this background, the present study was conducted to evaluate student's perception toward traditional and online teaching-learning methods and to evaluate the efficacy of online teaching-learning process.


  Subjects and Methods Top


The study protocol is approved by the Institutional Ethical Committee. A total 100 students of the first MBBS course were included in the present study. The participants were informed about the study and were asked to fill up the online written consents before filling the questionnaire. The present study was conducted in a form of a survey with the help of a structured questionnaire and the responses from the participants were collected online using the Google forms.[15]

Statistical analysis

The data obtained through online Google forms were compiled in Microsoft excel, presented as tables and analyzed in terms of proportion and represented in percentages.


  Results Top


Out of 100 first MBBS students, 97 students participated willingly in the study and responded to the questionnaire. [Table 1] shows the different questions given to the students. Regarding the class curriculum (Q.1) 56% students were satisfied, 32% remained neutral, and 12% were dissatisfied. When they were asked regarding the helpfulness of class material (Q.2), 92% students found it to be helpful, whereas 8% students felt that it is not helpful. Student's responses regarding their online evaluation (Q.3) were that, majority 99% felt that they were evaluated, whereas 1% felt that they were never evaluated. When asked about the communication skills of instructors (Q.4) 69% agreed upon excellent communication skills possessed by instructors, 23% remained neutral and 8% felt that the communication skills of the instructors were not enough. Student's view on instructor's motivational skills and teaching enthusiasm (Q.5) was that, 71% of students felt that the instructors were very enthusiastic in teaching the topic and were motivational; 20% of students were neutral, whereas 9% students disagreed for the same. When students were asked, weather the instructor's methods helped them to understand the topic (Q.6). 74% students agreed that the methods used by the instructors were good, 20% remained neutral; however, 6% disagreed. When student's responses on class curriculum were assessed [Chart 1], 16% felt it easy, 20% felt it to be difficult and majority of the students, 65% were neutral about their opinion. Student's feedback on the usefulness of online teaching learning and knowledge gained in theory and practical [Chart 2] was that, 59% students agreed, however, 41% felt that by using this method knowledge gained is not enough. Usefulness of online teaching-learning methods for the growth of their career was evaluated [Chart 3]; where 86% of students felt it helpful and 14% of students had disagreed. When finally, the student's responses on the comparison of online teaching learning method versus traditional teaching-learning methods was obtained [Chart 4], 75% felt that traditional teaching-learning methods are better than online teaching-learning methods; whereas 17% felt online classes may be better and 8% felt that online teaching-learning methods are better than traditional teaching-learning methods.
Table 1: Depicts first MBBS student's perspective on online teaching-learning process during COVID-19 pandemic

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In open-ended questionnaire [Table 2], students appreciated the teaching method, as it was easy for them to understand the topic. The evaluation after the lecture in the form of multiple-choice questions kept them alert throughout the class. Students were also happy because syllabus could be completed within time. The things disliked by students were the lack of practical demonstrations of the skills and student-teacher interaction. Some students suggested that due to nonfavorable class environment lectures were noninteresting and due to longer screen duration, they were feeling strain on eyes. Furthermore, the students residing in the remote places faced Internet problems.
Table 2: Depicts first MBBS student's responses through open-ended questionnaire on online teaching-learning methods

Click here to view



  Discussion Top


The sudden transition from on-campus learning to distance learning approach is a challenge for both faculty and students and has required a great deal of preparation over a short period of time. In view of this situation, we thought that seeking student's feedback on online teaching-learning method through a structured questionnaire would not only help in understanding student's perspectives on this new technology of teaching and learning; at the same time, this would also help in improvising this method further.

As per the student's responses it was observed that, study material provided to the students through various means was useful to them. According to them, video clips of certain processes and flow charts of some important metabolic pathways helped in understanding the concept more easily. Majority of the students felt that they were evaluated during the class, whereas few of them were not of the same opinion. Many of the students felt that online teaching-learning methods will help for the growth of their career, but a few did not. However, when the students were asked to compare online methods versus traditional teaching-learning method; many of the students felt that traditional teaching-learning methods are better than online teaching-learning methods. When we consider all the students responses together it is observed that, the students lack self-discipline, suitable learning materials, nonfavorable study environment as they are self-isolated at home, some of the students hailing from the remote places may also face enumerable technical difficulties; similarly during online teaching, body language and facial expressions are under restriction; this may be the reason why 75% of students liked traditional teaching.

Hence, it is proposed that the instructors should focus on improving and implementing effective instructional strategies to prevent negative learning attitudes of medical students and ensure the effectiveness of online teaching. This can be achieved by dividing teaching concept in smaller units; similarly, instructors should appropriately slow down the speech to allow the students to capture key knowledge points.

As the available literature on the current issue is very less, there are limitations to discuss these findings at length. However, the results of the study indicate that effective online teaching-learning is dependent upon; well-designed course content, motivated interaction between the instructors and learner that help in creation of a sense of online learning in the students and the use of newer modalities of information technology. It is observed that, online teaching offers a solution for education, but the instructional techniques involved are not completely the same as what we do in the classroom teaching; Therefore, the study proposes a systematic approach with the involvement of whole stakeholders in designing an improved plan, which will hopefully play an important role in improvement and development of online teaching-learning methods to address the strong desire of gaining knowledge by the students in the present scenario or similar other emergency situations in future.


  Conclusion Top


It is concluded from the study that, online teaching is beneficial, but the students prefer traditional teaching-learning method over it. However, in view of the current situation, students by and large have accepted the online teaching-learning method with a greater goal of gaining knowledge.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 
  References Top

1.
Mishra D, Nair AG, Gandhi RA, Gogate PJ, Mathur S, Bhushan P, et al. The impact of COVID-19 related lockdown on ophthalmology training programs in India-Outcomes of a survey. Indian J Ophthalmol 2020;68:999-1004.  Back to cited text no. 1
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
2.
Wang C, Horby PW, Hayden FG, Gao GF. A novel coronavirus outbreak of global health concern. Lancet 2020;395:470-3.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Xia J, Tong J, Liu M, Shen Y, Guo D. Evaluation of coronavirus in tears and conjunctival secretions of patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection. J Med Virol 2020;92:589-94.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Khanna RC, Honavar SG. All eyes on Coronavirus–What do we need to know as ophthalmologists. Indian J Ophthalmol 2020;68:549-53.  Back to cited text no. 4
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
5.
Nair AG, Gandhi RA, Natarajan S. Effect of COVID-19 related lockdown on ophthalmic practice and patient care in India: Results of a survey. Indian J Ophthalmol 2020;68:725-30.  Back to cited text no. 5
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
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Available from: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asiaindia-52024239. [last accessed on 15th April 2020].  Back to cited text no. 6
    
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9.
Feng-Pei L. Seminar teaching model based on the theory of social interaction effects on the quality of post-graduate education. J Chengdu Coll Educ 2006;4:45-7.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
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Nagoba BS, Mantri SB. Role of teachers in quality enhancement in higher education. JKIMSU 2015;4:177-82.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Alexandre B, Passos RM, Ono AH, Hermes-Lima M. The use of multiple tools for teaching medical biochemistry. Adv Physiol Educ 2008;32:38-46.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Cheng VC, Lau SK, Woo PC, Yuen KY. Competency based severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus as an agent of emerging and reemerging infection. Clin Microbiol Rev 2007;20:660-94.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Patil NG, Chan Y, Yan H. SARS and its effect on medical education in Hong Kong. Med Educ 2003;37:1127-8.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.
Clark J. Fear of SARS thwarts medical education in Toronto. BMJ 2003;326:784.  Back to cited text no. 14
    
15.
Available from: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1F4tQTuuyoqNKY9tB_zcykEVuJntmgk_qfEvtMgDt2Jw/edit. [Last accessed on 1st July 2020].  Back to cited text no. 15
    



 
 
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