The impact of multifaceted educational structuring on learning effectiveness in a surgical clerkship

H. H. Van Der Hem-Stokroos, H. E.M. Daelmans, C. P.M. Van Der Vleuten, H. J.Th M. Haarman, A. J.J.A. Scherpbier

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1 Citation (Scopus)


INTRODUCTION: Various measures have been introduced to enhance learning experiences in clerkships, generally with limited success. This study evaluated the impact of a multifaceted approach on the effectiveness of learning in a surgical clerkship. In accordance with results obtained in continuing medical education, several interventions were introduced simultaneously. We compared students' evaluations of the traditional surgical clerkship with those of the restructured clerkship. METHODS: Two consecutive cohorts of students were asked to complete a questionnaire about the quality and quantity of their learning experiences. Cohort 1 (n = 28) undertook the traditional clerkship and cohort 2 (n = 72) the restructured clerkship. A Mann-Whitney test was used to compare outcomes between the 2 cohorts. RESULTS: There were few statistically significant differences between cohorts 1 and 2. Overall, quality indicators did not differ between the 2 cohorts. DISCUSSION: A short-term multifaceted intervention led to a slight increase in the performance of clinical skills and a slight decrease in time spent on activities of limited educational value. The intervention may have been too brief to produce substantial effects. Future interventions should also target teachers, including trainees, in order to assess their opinions and address their educational needs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)879-886
Number of pages8
JournalMedical education
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2004


  • Clinical clerkship/*standards
  • Clinical competence/*standards
  • Cohort studies
  • Education, medical, undergraduate/*standards
  • Questionnaires

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