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Arch Hellen Med, 38(3), May-June 2021, 367-375


Webinars in general practice placement for final year medical students: A mixed-method analysis

E. Smyrnakis, N. Vlachopoulos, M. Moirasgenti,D.F. Pourtoulidou,A.A. Bourtzinakou, E. Savvidou, A. Baimaki, S. Aman, S. Kokkali, A. Benos
Laboratory of Primary Health Care, General Practice and Health Services Research, Faculty of Medicine, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece

OBJECTIVE To present the insights and opinions of medical students on the use of web-based seminars (webinars).

METHOD During their four-week placement in general practice (GP), 118 final-year Greek medical students were asked to voluntarily attend webinars on the topics of "multimorbidity" and "motivational interviewing". They were subsequently invited to participate in an anonymous online survey on their experience of the webinars. The questionnaire included closed-ended questions on a 5-point Likert scale regarding the usefulness of these webinars, and open-ended questions regarding their advantages and disadvantages.

RESULTS The participation rate was 93% (110 of 118 students) and the response rate 89% (98 of 110 participants). The overall response to the webinars and estimation of their effectiveness were positive, with a mean score of 3.60±1.02 and 3.59±1.13, respectively, on the 5-point Likert scale. Specifically, 58/98 medical students (59%) stated that they would participate in webinars organized at least once weekly. Concerning the answers to the open-ended questions, students highlighted the accessibility of webinars, which helped them to keep in contact with the university environment. The major disadvantages reported were the lack of face-to-face communication, and technical issues.

CONCLUSIONS The use of webinars is a novel teaching approach in the GP setting. It can successfully confront the barrier of distance which derives from the need for the simultaneous teaching of medical students in scattered geographical areas. This study exhibits the positive attitude of medical students towards the use of webinars in this field, in conjunction with the traditional models of teaching.

Key words: e-learning/computers, General practice, Primary care, Undergraduate medical education.

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