Effectiveness of Some Educational Methods and Tools on Improving the Level of Understanding of Biostatistics among Medical Students and Paramedical Postgraduate Students

  •  Nezhat Shakeri    


It has been observed that medical students and researchers lack sufficient knowledge in understanding statistical concepts. This indicates the importance of improving the level of instruction in this field. This experimental study was conducted to introduce and investigate the effectiveness of some educational methods and tools in improving the level of understanding of biostatistics among medical students and paramedical postgraduate students. For this purpose, from 40 medical students and 20 paramedical postgraduate students, who attended the biostatistics course, pre-test and post-test questionnaires were collected. The medical students were divided into two training groups, namely, training with the help of software (intervention group), and the traditional (lecture method) group. The paramedical postgraduate students were also divided into two groups, except that for the intervention group, in addition to training with the help of software, educational DVDs were also provided. Knowledge, attitude and the awareness index of the students were determined by using a questionnaire. Post-test results indicate that, the awareness index in the intervention group was significantly higher than the control group (P<0.05). The new method of teaching significantly upgraded the knowledge of the students (P<0.05) and increased the level of attitude of the medical students (P<0.04). Comparing the post-test results of the two groups, i.e., medical students and paramedical postgraduate students, demonstrated that a combination of software and instructional DVDs had a positive effect on the desired outcome (P<0.01). Usage of statistical software and additional virtual methods will contribute to increasing the level of knowledge and attitude of the students toward biostatistics. The training method and, accordingly, the curricula of biostatistics courses in medical and paramedical schools must be revised.

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