An innovative combination of traditional teaching rounds and individual videotaped feedback, similar to what sports instructors use to teach students proper form, is a beneficial educational tool for improving the performance of radiology residents, say researchers from McGill University Hospital Center in Montreal, Canada.
During a six-week period, six radiology residents were videotaped while discussing cases at teaching rounds. After their initial taping, they were shown the tapes and given instruction by an academic advisor. Their next performances were then taped. The researchers analyzed both tapes and found that, based on specific criteria, the case-based knowledge and the communication abilities of the residents improved after they were shown the videotaped feedback of themselves.
"It is particularly useful to view oneself perform during rounds and during examination situations. For example, the radiology resident can be taped from the back of the room, while she or he presents a case during rounds. The resident is taped at the beginning of the exercise, and again after a feedback session where the resident receives pointers from an academic radiologist who is involved with teaching," explained Jeffrey Chanowsky, MD, one of the study researchers.
"The effects of videotaping have been reported at a variety of academic levels in other medical disciplines. It has been reported to increase student self-awareness, allow evaluation of curriculum mastery, improve skill development, increase student involvement and enhance student learning outcomes. To our knowledge, this feedback technique has not been reported with regard to teaching in radiology, in which the feedback obtained is usually very subjective," said Marie-Therese Nguyen, MD, lead researcher of the study.
There are other benefits to videotaped feedback, as well, say the researchers. "It helps radiology residents develop awareness of their strengths and fosters growth in their verbal and nonverbal skills. It can also reduce the anxiety they will experience when they take their board examinations. Another benefit to this process is that a library of interesting teaching cases with teaching points and wisdom pearls is created that is easily accessible for further teaching seminars," said Dr. Nguyen.
The inspiration for the study also came from outside the medical realm. "I happened to be taking ski and tennis lessons at the time. My coach was using videotape feedback to help me improve. It really helped my serve and slalom," Dr. Nguyen added.
The researchers will present the full results of the study on May 18 during the American Roentgen Ray Society Annual Meeting in New Orleans, LA.
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