Role Of Preclinical Classroom Attendance Sharply Divides Faculty and Students

classroom attendance    In several medical schools, attendance in preclinical years is not mandatory for lectures, recordings of which are usually available to the students. Classroom attendance has diminished in some schools. A single-center cohort study was carried out using internet-based surveys to investigate how students and faculty perceive classroom attendance and how nonattendance influences teachers and the overall learning environment. The study showed that medical students (n = 382) and their teachers (n = 248) have significantly different expectations of the classroom experience, which in part contributes to their different outlooks regarding the importance of classroom attendance and its relationship to professionalism. Compared to students, faculty more significantly perceived a negative impact of poor attendance on lecture (74.7% for faculty vs. 41.6% for students). The authors provide suggestions to overcome this discrepancy including mutual understanding and faculty training in active learning approaches. They note that the study is limited by perceptions at the site of study and the conclusions may not apply to curricula which are predominantly based on small-groups or require attendance for lectures.-Sangita Phadtare, Ph.D., Cooper Medical School of Rowan University

Allyson R. Zazulia and Patricia Goldhoff., Faculty and medical student attitudes about preclinical classroom attendance., Teaching and Learning in Medicine: An International Journal  2014, 26:4, 327-334

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