Objective: To explore undergraduate medical students’ perception of variation in teaching and supervision at different clinical teaching sites. Methods: This descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted at the College of Medicine & Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, UAE during 2017. Four clinical teaching sites affiliated with CMHS were evaluated namely Shaikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC), Ambulatory Care Clinics (AC), Tawam Hospital (TH) and Al-Ain Hospital (AH). An online questionnaire was administered to year five and six students. Results: The response rate was 84.4%. Overall perception of the students about their clinical clerkship experience was positive. SKMC was rated as the best teaching site with mean rating of 3.79±0.97-4.79±0.43. The highest rated item was clinical teacher’s promotion of critical thinking in students while the lowest rated item was the opportunity to take responsibility for patient care. Ambulatory Care site had a mean rating of 2.33±1.23-4.13±1.19. The highest rated item at this site was the clinical teacher encouraging students to ask questions and participate actively. At Tawam Hospital, the mean ratings ranged between 2.65±1.64-4.31±0.86 with highest rated item being ability of the students to see cases with positive clinical findings. At the Al-Ain Hospital, the mean rating was in the range of 2.79±1.45-3.81±1.11. The item rated highest here was the ability of students to see cases with positive clinical findings. The lowest rated item at all three sites was the availability of on-call rooms and lockers. Significant variability was seen across training sites in the clinical teacher’s ability to act as professional role models, the opportunity for students to apply their previous knowledge to patient care and to independently assess patients before discussion with teachers. Conclusion: This study tool highlights variation in clinical teaching and supervision at four clinical teaching sites. It provides specific, actionable information which can be utilized to deliver equitable learning experiences across clinical clerkships and teaching sites. It places emphasis on the fact that lack of physical facilities hampers clinical teaching and supervision, hence, on call rooms, lockers and separate rooms for independent student interaction with patients should be provided at all clinical teaching sites.
- Medical student
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