During the AMSA 2010 Conference in Hobart, I thought it might be fun to pit the wits of the attendees with a ‘simple‘ series of multiple choice questions.
I thought it might be a great opportunity to see which of the medical students had actually learned anything at medical school so far…and whether alcohol did in fact reduce one’s ability to coherently cogitate. Nothing like a bit of inter-University competition to cure a hangover!
Thanks to the guys at MCQexams.com and the FutureHealth web development team we created a demo iPad app and trawled the darkened recesses of the conference hall and student lounge to pick on unwitting victims.
The 6 MCQ’s covered anatomy, pathology, physiology and clinical medicine with an emphasis on basic anatomy. Since the introduction of PBL there has been a steady decline in the provision of anatomy in education and I wanted to see whether this was reflected in the Universally Challenged competition
A study of anatomy teaching recently found that some Australian medical schools provided as few as 56 hours of anatomy tuition over a five-year course, while others provided 10 times as much over six years (ANZ Journal of Surgery 2010;80:212-16). As well as showing a marked historical decline in teaching of anatomy, the survey also showed that more than half of Australian medical schools did not even examine students in the subject.
Professor Kerryn Phelps July 2010
Medical students were able to compete on behalf of their University and each had 3 minutes to complete the task using an iPad or laptop.
During the 7 days of the conference a total of 357 students completed the MCQ challenge and on Sunday the statistics were analysed and the website ‘reset‘
Two categories recorded and the winners (and losers) are
- Best overall average score for a University with more than 10 entries
- (1) University of Adelaide (2.62/6) in (73.4 s)
- (2) University of Tasmania (2.54/6) in (71.4 s)
- (3) Monash University (2.33/6) in (71.1 s)
- …(19) Bond University (0.44/6) in (93.4 s)
- Quickest time for completion of question set
- (1) University of Western Australia (1.34/6) in (45.2 s)
- (2) Deakin University (1.41/6) in (53.4 s)
- (3) James Cook University (1.64/6) in (55.1 s)
- …(19) University of Queensland (1.15/6) in (153.4 s)
Analysis of these results could have been improved by taking a breath alcohol level prior to examination (eliminating all those blowing >0.55); declining all candidates unable to construct a sentence with >4 words (and those unable to clearly annunciate polysyllabic words) and by determining those Universities which still actually insist that anatomy is an integral part of medical training. Hopefully I will get it right for the Sydney TwentyEleven Conference!
Feel like having a go?
For those who would like to have a go, the MCQexams demonstration site will be hosted for another week and you will be able to watch the live streaming results following the reset after the conference…no cheating!