Perspectives on the nature of learning influence decisions about curriculum design, teaching and learning strategies, and assessment of students. Current literature on medical education suggests that medical teachers have much interest in using theories to inform their practice. This article describes the following learning theories that have been discussed to various degrees in previous literature on medical education: cognitivism, constructivism, experiential learning, adult learning, self-directed learning, community of practice and situated learning, cognitive apprenticeship, and reflective learning. Each theory is explained in sufficient detail to help readers grasp its essence. Then, medical education literature is cited to show how the theory has been used or can be used to guide practice in medical education. Finally, this article analyzes the problem-based learning approach as an example to illustrate how the theories may be reflected in practice. Throughout the introduction of the various theories, this article aims at their application in medical education and attempts to draw connections among the theories rather than represent them as unrelated or competing ideas.
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Dong, H., Lio, J., Sherer, R. et al. Some Learning Theories for Medical Educators. Med.Sci.Educ. 31, 1157–1172 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40670-021-01270-6
- Learning theories
- Learning theories for medical educators
- Medical education
- Medical education practice
- Perspectives on learning
- Theoretical approaches to learning