The impact of student-generated learning on individual study time and academic achievement
SourceMedical Education (London), 33, 11, (1999), pp. 808-814
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ BSI OE
Primary and Community Care
Medical Education (London)
SubjectLearning in changing contexts
Objectives The aim of this study was twofold. The first question concerns the way students make use of the learning issues they generate (as strict guidelines or as global guidelines) and whether this changes across years of training. The second question concerned the relationship between the way students make use of learning issues and the time spent on individual study and achievement on two tests of knowledge. Design A questionnaire was developed, containing seven items that measured to what extent students study strictly according to the student-generated learning issues and six items that measured to what extent students study beyond the student-generated learning issues. The questionnaire also contained one question in which students had to estimate the mean time spent on individual study. Achievement was measured by two forms of tests of knowledge, a block test assessing course content and a progress test assessing long-term functional knowledge. Setting Medical School of Maastricht University, the Netherlands. Subjects Medical students (response=69%) from the problem-based curriculum at the Maastricht University. Results During their first year students study strictly according to the content of the learning issues, whereas in later years students studied more according to their own learning needs and interests. In addition, students who tended to study beyond the generated learning issues spent more time on individual study and achieved better on both tests. Conclusions Students in a problem-based curriculum seem to become better self-directed learners during the years of training.
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