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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 21  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 74-79

Does pre-lecture Whatsapp intervention; enhance the knowledge of medical students in Clinical Microbiology?

Department of Microbiology, BGS Global Institute of Medical Sciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ragini Ananth Kashid
Department of Microbiology, BGS Global Institute of Medical Sciences, No. 67, BGS Health and Education City, Uttarahalli Main Road, Kengeri, Bengaluru - 560 060, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jacm.jacm_9_19

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INTRODUCTION: The most common method used to teach Clinical Microbiology is lecture. Lectures may not be interactive and interesting. Hence, the facilitator has to adopt newer teaching methods. WhatsApp is an interactive and interesting method to enhance medical education. Therefore, we decided to evaluate the effect of WhatsApp teaching, on the knowledge gain, in medical students. OBJECTIVE: To assess the knowledge gain, in medical students, using WhatsApp for teaching. METHODOLOGY: With institutional ethical committee approval taken, 146 medical students, who had smartphones and were using WhatsApp, were included in this study. By simple random sampling, an interventional study was conducted, by dividing them into two groups. The students in the intervention group (n = 73) were primed through WhatsApp, before the lecture session. The students in the control group (n = 73) attended the lecture, without prior exposure to the WhatsApp session. Ten pre- and post-lecture multiple-choice questions were given to both the groups. For the next lecture, crossover of the groups was done. RESULTS: 71.23% and 76.71% of the students in Group A and Group B, respectively, participated in the WhatsApp group discussion. In Session 1, the median score of pre-test of Batch A (intervention group) was 5 and Batch B (control group) was 4. The median score of post-test of both Batch A and Batch B was 7. In Session 2, the median score of pretest of Batch A (control group) was 4 and Batch B (intervention group) was 5. The median score of post-test of both Batch A and Batch B was 9. DISCUSSION: The percentage increase in knowledge, after the lecture, was statistically significant (P < 0.001). It is similar in both the Groups (A and B), in both the Sessions (1 and 2). This means that the control group (unexposed to the WhatsApp intervention) has also done well in the post-test. This is attributed to the lecture and not to the WhatsApp intervention. CONCLUSION: Although WhatsApp has several technical advantages, it has not contributed to the knowledge gain in the medical students.

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