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Open Access Research article

Effectiveness of evidence-based medicine training for undergraduate students at a Chinese Military Medical University: a self-controlled trial

Xiangyu Ma12, Bin Xu12, Qingyun Liu12, Yao Zhang12, Hongyan Xiong12 and Yafei Li12*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Epidemiology, College of Preventive Medicine, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400038, People’s Republic of China

2 Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Evidence-based Medicine, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing People’s Republic of China

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BMC Medical Education 2014, 14:133  doi:10.1186/1472-6920-14-133

Published: 4 July 2014

Abstract

Background

To evaluate the effect of the integration of evidence-based medicine (EBM) into medical curriculum by measuring undergraduate medical students’ EBM knowledge, attitudes, personal application, and anticipated future use.

Methods

A self-controlled trial was conducted with 251 undergraduate students at a Chinese Military Medical University, using a validated questionnaire regarding the students’ evidence-based practice (EBP) about knowledge (EBP-K), attitude (EBP-A), personal application (EBP-P), and future anticipated use (EBP-F). The educational intervention was a 20-hour EBM course formally included in the university’s medical curriculum, combining lectures with small group discussion and student-teacher exchange sessions. Data were analyzed using paired t-tests to test the significance of the difference between a before and after comparison.

Results

The difference between the pre- and post-training scores were statistically significant for EBP-K, EBP-A, EBP-P, and EBP-F. The scores for EBP-P showed the most pronounced percentage change after EBM training (48.97 ± 8.6%), followed by EBP-A (20.83 ± 2.1%), EBP-K (19.21 ± 3.2%), and EBP-F (17.82 ± 5.7%). Stratified analyses by gender, and program subtypes did not result in any significant changes to the results.

Conclusions

The integration of EBM into the medical curriculum improved undergraduate medical students’ EBM knowledge, attitudes, personal application, and anticipated future use. A well-designed EBM training course and objective outcome measurements are necessary to ensure the optimum learning opportunity for students.

Keywords:
Evidence-based medicine; Education; Medical; Evaluation