Department of obstetrics and Gyanecology, International Medical University, Jalan Rasah, Seremban, 70200, Malaysia
Introduction: Online formative assessments (OFA’s) have beenincreasingly recognised in medical education as resources thatpromote self-directed learning. Formative assessments are usedto support the self-directed learning of students. Online formativeassessments have been identified to be less time consuming withautomated feedback. This pilot study aimed to determine whetherparticipation and performance in online formative assessments(OFA’s) had measurable effects on learning and evaluate thestudents’ experience of using the OFA’s in the department ofObstetrics and Gynaecology.Methods: This is a cross-sectional study conducted amongfourth year medical students (n=92) during their seven weekpostings in Obstetrics and Gynaecology. Five sets of onlineformative assessments in the format of one best answers (OBA),Objective structured practical examination (OSPE) and Shortanswer question (SAQ) with feedback were delivered over fiveweeks through the online portal. The mean scores of the endof posting summative exam (EOP) of those who participated inthe assessments (OFA users) and of those who did not (non-OFAusers) were compared, using Students t-test. The frequency oftool usage was analysed and satisfaction surveys were utilized atthe end of the course by survey questionnaire using the five pointLikert scale.Results: The mean scores of the students in end of postingsummative examination marks for students who had participatedin the online formative assessment (OFA users) and for those whohad not (non OFA users) showed no significant difference in allthe three components OBA, SAQ and OSPE (p=0.902, 0.633,0.248). Majority of the students perceived that OFAs fulfilled thestated aims and objectives and so they would persuade their peersto participate in the OFAs.Conclusions: Online formative assessments are perceived astools that promote self-directed learning, improved knowledgeand tailor learning for individual learning needs and style.Keywords: Assessments, Self-directed learning, Education
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