COMPARISON OF ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE IN PEER ASSISTED AND EXPERT-ASSISTED LEARNING THROUGH TEST SCORES
Background: Peer Assisted Learning is being increasingly used in medical education as it is a well-established approach in learning. The objective of this study was to compare the effectiveness of Peer Assisted Learning with Expert-Assisted Learning in terms of assessment scores in first year MBBS students during their cardiovascular module. Methods: A cross-over study was carried out on 139 first year medical students at Foundation University Islamabad after ethical approval. The entire class constituted the sampling frame. Students were given an introductory lecture on Peer Assisted Learning methodology at the beginning of study. Three Peer Assisted Learning sessions were conducted in small groups with all students as an adjunct to traditional large group lectures, and in the fourth session all students went through pre-informed assessment comprising of short answer questions and multiple choice questions. In the next three weeks, same students went through conventional Expert-Assisted Learning sessions, followed by same type of assessment with different topics of the same module. The scores were compared. Mann-Whitney U test was used as a test of significance. Results: Test scores, represented as median (IQR), of the Peer-Assisted Learning and Expert-Assisted Learning sessions were 6.50 (5.00–7.50) and 7.00 (6.00–7.50) respectively (p=0.46). Pass percentages in these sessions were 82.9% (n=102) and 87.5% (n=105) respectively, with odds ratio of 0.69 and 95% confidence interval of 0.34 to 1.42. Conclusion: Academic performance of Peer-Assisted Learning sessions in terms of test scores was not better than Expert-Assisted Learning sessions.
Pak J Physiol 2018;14(4):47–50
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