Teaching and learning of ethics in Ophthalmology: The perceptions of undergraduate medical students

Rajiv Gupta, Saurabh Shrivastava, Shahzaib Rehan, Prabhu Venkatesan, Soumendra Sahoo


Purpose of Study: This study was aimed to uncover the perceptions of undergraduate students specifically pertaining to their experiences of ethics teaching and their opinions of the value of such teaching.
Methodology: We used a mixed methods design involving 148 students through a sequential exploratory strategy. Three ethics sessions revolved around the teaching of ethics in Ophthalmology after which the participants were interviewed using open-ended questions. The data was analysed by coding, categorisation and the subsequent derivation of themes. The quantitative analysis was done through a questionnaire survey to further explore the students’ preference on teaching methodologies.
Results: Majority students perceive the objective of ethics teaching is to help them to become a better doctor, to better equip them to deal with ethical dilemmas in the future, to improve their social skills, and to help them to avoid legal complications. The preferred formats of learning ethics as expressed by participants was scenario based discussion (29%), debate (25%), self-directed learning (24%) & lectures (22%).
Conclusion: The common theme emerged from the qualitative analysis was that students wanted to learn ethics in order to help to make them better doctors. Scenario based discussion was the indicated preferred teaching method expressed by students.

Keyword: Ethics, Teaching, Students, Perception.

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