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Integration of Collaborative Learning into Biomedical Sciences Examinations


Abstract

The benefits and advantages of collaborative learning have become clear in recent years. However, university assessment remains driven for the most part by individual examination. Examinations present an intensely focused opportunity for student learning yet opportunities for collaboration, communication and feedback are for the most part wasted. Nobel Laureate physicist and educationist Carl Weiman and others have pioneered collaborative two-stage examinations where students initially take examinations individually then repeat the examination in groups of three or four. In the North American physical sciences context there is now clear evidence for the efficacy of such an approach in improving student learning, long-term retention, building collaborative skills, providing immediate feedback, and integration of the underlying philosophy of collaborative learning into examinations. However, no university course has yet attempted to integrate and evaluate two-stage examinations to devise informed recommendations for their use in biomedical sciences in an Asian context. Here, we propose to pilot and evaluate a two-stage examination within the Bachelor of Biomedical Sciences course “Essential Proteomics” in the second semester of 2015-2016 for which the principal investigator is the course coordinator. We will evaluate this innovation using a mixed-method approach of a newly designed two-stage examination questionnaire, semi-structured student interviews and comparatively measure impact on student learning between stages of the examination. Results of evaluation will guide informed recommendations regarding advantages and pitfalls of two-stage examinations for biomedical sciences for subsequent implementation into other courses and programmes across the University of Hong Kong and beyond to benefit student learning.

Principal Investigator

Dr. J.A. Tanner, School of Biomedical Sciences, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine Contact

Project level

Programme-level project

Project Completion

September 2016

Deliverables

  1. Integration of Collaborative Learning into Biomedical Sciences Examinations Questionnaire. Download
  2. International Conference 1 Abstract: Collaborative examinations in biomedical sciences: implementation and evaluation – Frontiers in Medical and Health Sciences Education on Promoting Excellence in Assessment, Hong Kong (2016). Download
  3. International Conference 1 Poster: Collaborative examinations in biomedical sciences: implementation and evaluation Frontiers in Medical and Health Sciences Education on Promoting Excellence in Assessment, Hong Kong (2016). Download
  4. International Conference 2 Abstract: Design, Implementation and Evaluation of a Two-Stage Examination to Enhance Student 14th Asia Pacific Medical Education Conference – from Globalisation of Education to Global Healthcare. Singapore (2017). Download
  5. International Conference Abstract 3 Abstract: Assessing Collaborative Learning Outcomes in High-Stakes Tests: Design and Evaluation of a two-stage examination. Download

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