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Lucy Cobbs, Edmund Tsui, Ilyse Haberman, Eleanore Kim, Laurence Sperber, Mengfei Wu, Joel Schuman; Student perceptions of the ophthalmology curriculum in medical school. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):6158.
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The purpose of this study is to evaluate medical student perception of the current ophthalmology curriculum without mandatory rotation at New York University School of Medicine (NYUSOM). Despite the lack of emphasis on ophthalmology in many medical school curricula, eye examination and management skills are important for physicians to master because they can reveal systemic pathology and require emergent treatment. In the context of rapidly evolving medical school curricula and lack of national ophthalmology education standards, it is important to assess ophthalmology training adequacy.
A cross-sectional Internet survey was distributed to all currently enrolled NYUSOM students, including those pursuing dual degrees, in March to May 2017. The main parameters measured in the study were students’ self-reported confidence with ophthalmology skills and satisfaction with curriculum.
Response rate was 27.5% (166 of 604) of NYUSOM students. Many students reported they were not comfortable diagnosing eye emergencies (64%), using a direct ophthalmoscope (71%), or testing visual acuity (50%). The majority of students did not want ophthalmology to become a mandatory rotation, but reported additional in-person training would be most helpful, compared to videos, web-based didactics, lectures, or virtual training. Completion of an ophthalmology elective and more hours of ophthalmology training were associated with increased confidence with eye examination and greater satisfaction with the curriculum.
It is critical for all physicians-in-training to have adequate skills in eye examination. Identifying areas of improvement and determining the best teaching modality will be important in updating the ophthalmology curriculum for medical students. The majority of medical students are not at all or only slightly confident with eye examinations. Increasing the amount of in-person ophthalmology training in medical school improves confidence with eye examination.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
Most students reported they would find additional in-person ophthalmology training to be most helpful (64.8%), followed by web-based didactic (15.2%), lecture based (9.6%), video (6.8%), and virtual ophthalmology training (2.5%)
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