Musculoskeletal Ultrasound Training for Radiology Residents: Lecture Versus Interactive Learning Module

Ezekiel Maloney, Daniel S Hippe, Angelisa Paladin, Felix S Chew, Alice S Ha
Academic Radiology 2016, 23 (7): 789-96

RATIONALE AND OBJECTIVES: A prospective randomized study was conducted to assess whether an electronic learning module was as effective as a didactic lecture to teach musculoskeletal ultrasound to radiology residents.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Thirty-three residents were randomized into a module group versus a didactic group. All residents took a written "pretest" to assess baseline knowledge. Subsequently, the 17 residents in the didactic group attended a live didactic session delivered by a subspecialist musculoskeletal radiology faculty member. The 16 residents in the module group completed an electronic learning module that contained similar content to the live didactic session. Finally, all residents completed a written "posttest," which served as the outcome measure.

RESULTS: Mean score significantly improved between pre- and posttest by 10.6 ± 11.2% in the didactic group (DG; P = 0.002) and 14.0 ± 8.2% in the module group (MG; P < 0.001), with a nonsignificant difference between groups (P = 0.4). Mean pretest scores (75.6 ± 9.4% DG and 73.7 ± 9.2% MG, P = 0.6) and posttest scores (86.2 ± 9.7% DG and 87.7 ± 5.2% MG, P = 0.5) were not significantly different. The adjusted mean difference in posttest scores between groups was -1.9% (95% confidence interval: -7.2 to 3.5%).

CONCLUSION: If didactic training was better than electonic module training, the difference was relatively small (<5%). A similar web-based, interactive module could be employed to teach American Board of Radiology Core Examination and Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Diagnostic Radiology Milestone musculoskeletal ultrasound learning objectives to radiology residents. An electronic module could reduce demands on faculty staff time invested in musculoskeletal ultrasound training and be more widely available to residents.

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