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Authors: Ameade, E. P. K.
Amalba, A.
Keywords: Attitude, Ghana
medical students
problem-based learning
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: Journal of Contemporary Medical Education
Series/Report no.: Vol. 3;Issue 3
Abstract: Objectives: The length of medical training at the undergraduate level varies across the world ranging from 4.5 to 7 years. In most medical schools including the three others in Ghana, the period of training a doctor is 6-year. Medical students in the University for Development Studies (UDS) however graduate after 7 years, because they spend a year in a mandatory 1st year class called problem-based learning zero (PBL 0). This study assessed the medical students’ attitude toward this mandatory 1st year and the relevance of the courses taught during that period. Methods: A total of 304 non-graduate 1st year to the 7th year medical students completed a questionnaire in a cross-sectional study. Data were analyzed using SPSS 18 and GraphPad 5.01. Association between different variables was tested. Results: The age of entry into UDS medical school is 19.14 years. With a maximum attitude score of 5, students had a negative attitude toward Mathematics (2.31 ± 1.14), Physics (2.46 ± 1.27) and African studies (2.34 ± 1.22) courses. Cell structure (4.29 ± 0.84) and Biomolecules (4.20 ± 0.97) were courses students found most relevant to their training. Attitude toward the mandatory first (PBL 0) year was negative across all the levels, but there was a significant worsening of attitude as students advance to higher years of study (P < 0.0001). Though some students were socially and psychologically affected as a result of spending a year at PBL 0, the greatest negative effect was the economic constraints it brought to themselves and their guardians (62.3%, n = 134). Conclusion: Medical students at the UDS Studies have a neutral or negative attitudes toward courses at PBL 0 except Genetics, Cell structure, Organic Chemistry and Biomolecules. Furthermore, the students had a negative attitude toward this preparatory year and suggested it is scrapped since it has a social, psychological and especially economic impact on them.
ISSN: 21468354
Appears in Collections:School of Medicine and Health Sciences

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