Improving Medical Students’ Critical Thinking And Observational Skills For Learning Human Gross Anatomy: A Study At School Of Medicine And Health Sciences Of University For Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana

Critical Thinking And Observational Skills For Learning Human Gross Anatomy

  • Mani E Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana
  • Tachie-Menson A Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana
  • Essel BH Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana
  • Abass H University for Development Studies, School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Tamale, Ghana
  • Ameade EPK University for Development Studies, School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Tamale, Ghana
  • Femke F University for Development Studies, School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Tamale, Ghana
Keywords: Critical thinking, Critical observation, Medical students, Visual images, Visual art-based, Visual thinking strategies.

Abstract

Background: To investigate students’ percept on whether visual art-based interventions would improve their observational skills, as well as to investigate how visual art-based interventions can improve medical students’ critical thinking and observational skills for learning of Anatomy.The ability to critically think, observe and analyse physical features of disease conditions on the human body is an essential skill medical students need to develop in order to conduct physical examination of patients effectively. This study aimed at investigating how visual art-based interventions can improve 3rd and 4th Year undergraduate medical students’ observational skills to facilitate learning of Anatomy. It was important to conduct this study because the results will trigger a dialogue among experts of Medical education and Art education on how to explore and incorporate visual art-based interventions into the pedagogy of the medical school as an alternative scientific approach to enhance medical students’ critical thinking and observational skills for learning of Anatomy as well as for practice. Material and Method: The study employed the post-test only experimental design. The target population was 349 students comprising 211 third year and 138 fourth year students. The study was conducted in the second semester of the 2017-2018 academic years. A randomized sample of 66% on each year group was proportionately chosen for the study. This comprised 139 and 91 third year and fourth year students respectively. The students were divided into two groups: Experimental and Control groups. The experimental group was given specific instructions on how to apply Visual Thinking Strategies (VTS) in analysing visual details of images. Four images of two-dimensionality were distributed to the students to critically observe and analyse its visual details. A scoring scheme was developed to guide in scoring the students’ performance. A questionnaire of 23 items with four five-point Likert scale feedback questions and four Visual Thinking Strategies questions were distributed to the participants. It took about 1 hour 30 minutes to complete the exercise. Statistical analysis of responses from the questionnaire and experiment was done using the Software Package for Social Sciences. The results were presented in inferential statistics with mean, standard deviations, p values and Cronbach’s Alpha. The study used 99% confidence interval and Cronbach’s alpha of .9 reliability coefficient for determining internal consistency of the feedback questions. Results: The experimental group scored significantly with mean and standard deviation of 18.56±8.42 on knowledge score than the control group that scored mean and standard deviation of 11.81±6.70. The overall impact was significant with p = 0.0001. Students’ responses via the questionnaire indicated awareness that visual art-based interventions can improve their critical thinking and observational skills for learning of Anatomy. Conclusion: This study concludes that visual art-based interventions with Visual Thinking Strategies used as alternative scientific approach for training medical students would complement the Skills Coordinators’ efforts in improving the students’ critical thinking and observational skills. [E Mani Natl J Integr Res Med, 2020; 11(2):40-46]

Published
2020-03-01
How to Cite
Mani E, Tachie-Menson A, Essel BH, Abass H, Ameade EPK, & Femke F. (2020). Improving Medical Students’ Critical Thinking And Observational Skills For Learning Human Gross Anatomy: A Study At School Of Medicine And Health Sciences Of University For Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana: Critical Thinking And Observational Skills For Learning Human Gross Anatomy. National Journal of Integrated Research in Medicine, 11(2), 40-46. Retrieved from http://nicpd.ac.in/ojs-/index.php/njirm/article/view/2780
Section
Original Articles