Background Traditional methods of teaching can seem dull to both students and teachers. Students crave examination performance coaching and recognise it may be formative for their clinical practice after qualification.
Method A voluntary teaching and learning encounter called Sickionary® was developed to give stuents supervised experience in speaking to their peers on common topics of paediatrics. Final year medical students each received in turn a topic and had to immediately speak about it for two minutes, then take questions and feedback from the group. Questionnaire and comment feedback on the episode was collected 1 week later.
Results 32 students participated with only 2 declining and 1 later saying they wished they had not played. 53% of students were EU with 47% non EU. Experience of public speaking was reported by 13/34 = 39%. The structure was considered fair by 25/34 = 73%. Prior knowledge of topics or model answers was not considered critical to a successful experience. An invigilator was deemed necessary by 80%. Overall 100% of students felt that they learnt something about paediatrics from colleagues’ presentations.
Conclusion Sickionary® was well received by nearly all students, who felt the “game” gave them a good view of their own and their colleagues’ knowledge of common paediatric issues and experience of thinking on their feet in front of a senior clinical teacher. Sickionary® could be adapted to any undergraduate of postgraduate teaching setting.
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