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Technology Use in Ophthalmology Resident Education: Results to Aid Program Directors in Curriculum DevelopmentFunding This work was supported in part by an unrestricted educational grant from Research to Prevent Blindness.
13 December 2018
20 May 2019
12 July 2019 (online)
Background The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education in ophthalmology lists the use of information technology to optimize learning as a common program requirement. The use of technology in published studies often takes the form of e-learning. No study to date outlines what methods are preferred by residents and faculty in United States Ophthalmology programs.
Objective We conducted a needs assessment to evaluate the current state of technology in teaching and learning in an ophthalmology residency program, to identify barriers to using technology, and to determine areas for future curriculum development.
Methods We used an anonymous online survey to assess current residents and faculty within our ophthalmology residency program.
Results Residents identified their primary learning styles as visual and kinesthetic and they preferred videos and online question banks.
More than 35% of faculty respondents “never” use technology in teaching. Among faculty who do use technology, online quizzes and videos were the most common modalities used to supplement lectures. Common barriers to incorporating technology included lack of time, lack of knowledge of available technologic tools, and lack of skill in using technology.
Both faculty and residents identified a Web platform for curricular elements and a feedback app as potentially beneficial additions to the curriculum. Each group rated an app to receive feedback more highly than an app to provide it. The two groups disagreed on the usefulness of online quizzes. There was variability among faculty responses regarding the usefulness of technology in teaching.
Conclusion Our needs assessment identified areas of agreement among residents and faculty as well as mismatches and barriers regarding the use of technology to support learning by ophthalmology residents. Our study is an example of a best practice for use of a needs assessment to provide a framework for curriculum development and program improvement in an individual program. Further research is needed to generalize these results across ophthalmology programs.
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