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Medical Students’ Improved Confidence as Educators Revealed Through Reflections on Their Teaching in a Student-As-Teacher Course: A Qualitative Study

Lama, Anna Marie (2021) Medical Students’ Improved Confidence as Educators Revealed Through Reflections on Their Teaching in a Student-As-Teacher Course: A Qualitative Study. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Teaching is one of the important roles of a physician educator. Although medical education institutions place much emphasis and resources on faculty development in teacher training, fourth-year medical students (4Y) that graduate to first-year residents who teach medical students are often overlooked in the training. Longitudinal students as teacher courses (SaT) are small communities of practice that support the development of teachers as they transition from 4Y to first-year resident who teaches medical students. There is very little published research on how medical schools are currently executing successful SaT programs which focus on curriculum including teaching skills such as clinical bedside teaching and classroom management.

The purpose of this improvement science qualitative study, set in a medical school in West Virginia, was to examine the improvement of 12 fourth-year medical student teachers’ reported confidence levels associated with teaching and learning in the clinical setting and its impact on their overall improvement of teaching skills development in a longitudinal SaT rotation. The study examined 4Y teacher confidence over twelve weeks, in two phases: Phase 1 bi-monthly journaling while student teaching in a Physical Diagnosis and Clinical Integration course, Phase II summative reflective narrative at the SaT midway point in the SaT course. Data collected from both instruments were used to identify similar meaning units—internal and structural relationships between categories of words and experiences—as well as to identify correlations between each 4Ys lived experiences. These data led to understandings of 4Ys’ challenges and successes while practicing teaching skills and navigating the educational teaching landscape.

The findings of this study, specifically major meaning units from journal entries and summative reflective narratives, revealed open self-reflections and detailed descriptions of their personal experiences while in the clinical teaching field. Further, these data demonstrate 4Ys’ improved confidence in teaching skill acquisition through the repetition of consistent teaching placement practice opportunities within a SaT course. Content analysis revealed four meaning units: clinical bedside pedagogical skills, classroom management pedagogical skills, managing the psychosocial environment, and educator identity formation. Additionally, these data provide a better understanding of the benefit of medical student teachers’ SaT course.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Lama, Anna MarieAML240@pitt.eduAML240
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairShafiq, M. Najeebmnshafiq@pitt.edumnshafiq
Committee MemberCottrell,
Committee MemberHogg, Jeffrey
Committee MemberTrahan, Keith Waynekwt2@pitt.edukwt2
Date: 31 August 2021
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 27 May 2021
Approval Date: 31 August 2021
Submission Date: 21 July 2021
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 125
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Administrative and Policy Studies
Degree: EdD - Doctor of Education
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Students as Teachers, Curriculum, Medical School Teaching, Peer Teaching, Teacher Training, Learning by Teaching, Teaching Program, Teaching Rotation, Teaching Skills, Teaching Field Placements, Journaling, Phenomenography
Date Deposited: 31 Aug 2021 17:24
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2021 17:24


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