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Team-based learning for teaching musculoskeletal ultrasound skills: a prospective randomised trial

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Abstract

Objective

The aim of this prospective randomised trial was to assess the impact of the team-based learning approach on basic musculoskeletal ultrasound skills in comparison to both peer-assisted and conventional teaching and to examine the influence of gender and learning style on learning outcomes.

Methods

In this prospective randomised trial, we randomly assigned 88 students to 3 groups: team-based learning (n = 19), peer-assisted learning (n = 36) and conventional teaching (n = 33). Pre-existing knowledge was assessed using a multiple-choice (MC) exam. Student performance after completing the course was measured using an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) and a second MC exam. Students were asked to complete Kolb’s Learning Style Inventory and to evaluate the course.

Results

There was a significant gain in theoretical knowledge for all students (p < 0.001). The team-based learning groups’ performance proved to be significantly superior on the OSCE (p = 0.001). As gender had no significant effect on practical or theoretical performance, learning style was linked to differences in the practical outcome. An evaluation showed overall satisfaction with the course and with the respective teaching methods.

Conclusion

Team-based learning proved to be superior to peer-assisted and conventional teaching of musculoskeletal ultrasound skills.

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Availability of data and materials

The datasets analysed during the current study and the full trial protocol are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.

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Acknowledgements

The authors thank all the students who participated—without their enthusiasm and willingness, this study would not have been possible. The manuscript was proofread by Scribendi Inc., 405 Riverview Drive, Suite 304, Chatham ON, Canada.

Funding

None.

Author information

GGD, CC and MK had full access to all the data in the study and take responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis. All authors meet all three of the requirements for authorship. BCL, FJPB, LH, SN, CDW, CN, DE, CB and KH were highly involved in the planning and execution of this study. CC organized the project to complete his medical thesis. Furthermore, GGD, CC, BCL, FJPB, LH, CDW, CN, DE, CB and SN were highly involved in the acquisition of data and in the process of data interpretation. KH, CDW, CN and CB made a significant contribution to the analysis and interpretation of the data. Furthermore, they took part in the manuscript review process and revised it critically. In this way, they provided important intellectual content in line with the study’s execution. MK acted as the initiator of the study and was highly involved in the advancement of the conception.

Correspondence to Matthias Knobe.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

The authors report no conflict of interest.

Ethics approval

Institutional Review Board approval was granted before initiation of this study, and strict confidentiality guidelines were followed (Local Ethics Committee Reference Number EK 178/09).

Consent to participate

Participants provided informed written consent for the use of their results in this study and for publication at the time of enrolment.

Consent for publication

Written consent for publication was provided at the time of enrolment by the participants.

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Cremerius, C., Gradl-Dietsch, G., Beeres, F.J.P. et al. Team-based learning for teaching musculoskeletal ultrasound skills: a prospective randomised trial. Eur J Trauma Emerg Surg (2020) doi:10.1007/s00068-019-01298-9

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Keywords

  • Team-based learning
  • Peer teaching
  • Medical education
  • Ultrasound
  • MSUS
  • Objective structured clinical examination