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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 237-241

Introduction of interactive teaching in dermatology to enhance learning

1 Department of Dermatology, CMC, Ludhiana, Punjab, India
2 Department of Dermatology, Dr. B. R. Ambedkar State Institute of Medical Sciences, Mohali, Punjab, India

Date of Submission04-Jun-2022
Date of Decision05-Aug-2022
Date of Acceptance24-Aug-2022
Date of Web Publication17-Mar-2023

Correspondence Address:
Anuradha Bhatia
Department of Dermatology, Dr. B. R. Ambedkar State Institute of Medical Sciences, Mohali, Punjab
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/cjhr.cjhr_72_22

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Background: Adopting interactive teaching in dermatology will encourage the students to acquire a deeper understanding of the subject, increase attention span and retention of knowledge, and enhance self-directed learning. Aim and Objectives: To introduce Quiz as an Interactive teaching tool in dermatology and assess the perception of the undergraduate students and faculty about using quizzes in dermatology. Methodology: This prospective study was conducted in the department of dermatology. Participants are the 2nd year MBBS students. After sensitizing the students and taking informed consent, quizzes were conducted on four topics, at appropriate time intervals using the “POLL EVERYWHERE” software. During the lecture, a quiz was conducted as follows: At the beginning of the lecture (a), after 20 min (b) and at the end of the lecture (c). At the end of the 4 interactive lectures, questionnaires were provided to the students and faculty to get feedback on their perception regarding the interactive teaching sessions. The responses of the feedback forms were graded using a 5-point Likert's scale. Statistical Analysis: The data were entered in Microsoft Excel and analyzed using SPSS (Statistical Packages for the Social Sciences, software version 21.o. Armonk, NY: IBM corp). Open-ended questions were analyzed by thematic qualitative analysis and expressed as percentages. Results: About 44.6% agreed that quizzes do make dermatology more interactive. Around 53% students agreed that interactive learning helps in better retention of knowledge. All faculty perceived that interactive learning is an appropriate motivator for the undergraduate students to do self-directed learning and that quiz is an effective tool. Conclusions: Interactive teaching learning methods such as quizzes will encourage the students in the better understanding of dermatology.

Keywords: Dermatology, interactive teaching, learning tool, medical education, quiz, undergraduates

How to cite this article:
Williams A, Thomas EA, Bhatia A. Introduction of interactive teaching in dermatology to enhance learning. CHRISMED J Health Res 2022;9:237-41

How to cite this URL:
Williams A, Thomas EA, Bhatia A. Introduction of interactive teaching in dermatology to enhance learning. CHRISMED J Health Res [serial online] 2022 [cited 2023 Mar 31];9:237-41. Available from: https://www.cjhr.org/text.asp?2022/9/4/237/371944

  Introduction Top

Even though dermatological diseases are the most common problem in an outpatient department setting, dermatology teaching curriculum has inadequate teaching hours (18 h). Therefore, an undergraduate lacks significant exposure to dermatology.[1] Hence, the teachers have to look for other teaching learning methods which will help to increase the attention span, level of confidence of the undergraduate students, enhance active learning, and motivate the students to learn for better understanding of dermatological disorders. Conventionally, didactic lectures are the backbone for imparting knowledge in medical education pedagogy. Traditional curriculum with its assessment methods tended to encourage students to mug up knowledge about the subject just before the examination and did not focus on the problem solving abilities, analytical thinking, or communication skills which resulted in the Indian Medical Graduate not being competent to diagnoses common dermatological conditions and benefit the community at large without further specialized training in the field of dermatology. A traditional lecture is devoid of interaction, is a passive mode of teaching and does not include feedback. It is helpful for imparting “knows” and not “knows how” level on the Miller's pyramid.[2]

We know from the literature that the optimal attention span of students is only 20 min.[3] Therefore, a change in the activity after 20 min of lecturing would be helpful in keeping the students attention up for longer. Interactivity improves the effectivity of a didactic lecture by increasing the motivation to study and increasing the optimal attention span in the classroom.[4],[5] Interactive teaching helps in longer knowledge retention and makes learning more efficient.[6],[7] Interactive teaching involves a dialog between the teacher and the students, comprising of increased discussion and active participation by the students eliminating the passivity from the teaching-learning process. Here, the teacher puts on the role of a facilitator who guides the learning process and changes the content of the didactic lecture to allow for the implementation of new techniques to fulfil this purpose. Interactive teaching can be of various types: Quizzes and short answers, using audience responses, use of clinical cases, flipped classroom, Jigsaw technique, concept maps, role plays, and simulations to name a few.[8] Studies have shown that interactive teaching is preferred by the students and quizzes is the most popular mode of Interactive teaching.[4] Quizzes help in the long-term retention of the lecture content.[9] Quiz has been used traditionally for the assessment, although it is a highly effective tool for learning both for students and teachers alike. A properly structured quiz helps in concept building and deeper understanding of the subject. Pedagogical value of quizzes increases if the feedback is provided to the students immediately. If delivered in a large group setting, quizzes provide a platform for cooperate or shared learning where the students learn from the answers of each other and build an emotional and intellectual connect, develop self-esteem and a willingness to cooperate in similar settings.[10] Hence, the didactic lectures can be made more effective and valuable especially in a large group setting by utilizing the various techniques of interactive learning which enhances active learning, attention span, engages and motivates the learner in the subject.[8] With the revolution in the field infrastructure and technology, the use of interactive teaching in large classroom settings has become fairly easy.[11] With the introduction of new competency-based medical education curriculum in 2019, the role of the teacher is gradually shifting from being an information provider to one of a facilitator who designs a teaching framework for concept building, provides resources, stimulates analytical thinking, etc. Hence, sensitization of the faculty to the various interactive teaching methods and incorporating practical activities into the traditional lectures is the need of the hour.

As there are few published articles on dermatology education among undergraduates, this study was conducted to sensitize the faculty regarding the role of quizzes as interactive teaching learning method and to assess the perception of the faculty and the students regarding the same.

Aim and objectives

  1. To introduce Quiz as an interactive teaching tool in dermatology to enhance learning
  2. To assess the perception of the undergraduate students and faculty about interactive teaching using quizzes in dermatology.

  Methodology Top

This prospective study was conducted in the department of dermatology. The participants for the study were 75 year MBBS students who are scheduled for the Dermatology theory classes. The departmental faculty was sensitized to the study and after considering their valuable inputs, a series of 4 Interactive teaching sessions were planned as follows:

Four relevant topics are chosen from the Medical Council of India curriculum: Acne vulgaris, Steven − Johnson syndrome, Lichen planus, and Vitiligo vulgaris.

Based on the selected topics, quiz questions were designed by the principal investigator and validated by the departmental faculty. The faculty participated in the interactive teaching session and were encouraged to conduct similar quizzes for other dermatology topics. Junior faculty (Post graduate students were also included in the study). The students were also sensitized to this intervention prior to the beginning of the lecture series. The participants were included only after a proper written consent was formally obtained.

The implementation of interactive teaching was done as part of traditional didactic lecture. The mode of interactive teaching was conducting quizzes at appropriate time intervals using the “POLL EVERYWHERE” software. This is an online feedback tool which was integrated onto the Powerpoint presentation (PPT) of the teacher beforehand. The teacher projected 4 questions on the power point slide related to the lecture content. The students thought about the answers and then went to (https://www.polleverywhere.com/login) and logged in using the user name provided by the teacher (projected on the PPT slide) and clicked on the right answer. After a time out, the cumulated results were projected graphically on the PPT slide. At the end of this activity, the teacher and the students were able to get a representative feedback on this newly acquired knowledge instantly. The anonymity was maintained throughout the process. During the course of an hour of scheduled didactic lecture, a quiz was conducted as follows: Three set of questions at the beginning of the lecture (a), After 20 min (b) And at the end of the lecture (c). Each set of questions were new and covered the topic being taught in that class.

At the end of the 4 Interactive lectures, questionnaires were provided to the students and faculty to get feedback on their perception regarding the interactive teaching sessions.

Statistical analysis

The data were entered in Microsoft Excel and analysed using SPSS (Statistical Packages for Social Sciences, version 21.o. Armonk, NY, USA: IBM corp). Open-ended questions were be analyzed by thematic qualitative analysis.

  Results Top

The 2nd year MBBS batch has 75 students. This study was conducted over a course of 4 dermatology lectures, 1 week a part, from April to May 2020. The POLL EVERYWHERE software was employed to conduct online quizzes and the student and faculty feedback was taken at the end of the study period. The feedback questionnaires were distributed to all the 75 students who had given written consent to be the part of the study. Of these, the feedback responses were received by only 56 students. The perceptions of the students are recorded in [Table 1].
Table 1: Students' perception of interactive teaching in dermatology

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Majority of the students were of the opinion that quizzes do make dermatology learning more interactive and they were receptive to this teaching learning method. They agreed that quizzes helps in better understanding of the subject. While 53.6% agreed and 35.7% strongly agreed that interactive learning should be part of dermatology teaching, only 1.8% students' disagreed while 8.9% remained neutral. With regard to the statement that interactive learning is helpful in diagnosing common Dermatology clinical cases; the response of 83.9% students was affirmative, while 14.3% chose to remain neutral.

The perception regarding interactive learning in dermatology through quizzes was noted for 6 faculty members. All faculty perceived that interactive learning is an appropriate motivator for the undergraduate students to do self-directed learning and that quiz is an effective tool, which should be part of dermatology teaching for increasing interactivity. Four faculty (66.7%) strongly agreed while and 2 (33.3%) faculty agreed to these statements. Furthermore, 66.7% of the faculty strongly agreed to make similar learning modules for other dermatology topics. Interactive learning increases knowledge retention in students was strongly felt by 83.3% of the faculty members [Figure 1]. Themes for responses to the open-ended questions (any other comments and suggestions for improvement) are tabulated in [Table 2].
Figure 1: Faculty perception of Interactive teaching in Dermatology

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Table 2: Themes for responses to the open-ended questions

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  Discussion Top

In the 21st century, like all the spheres of life, medical education too is influenced by the increasing use of internet technology to enhance learning. Lectures continue to be the standardized, cost-effective and efficient way to deliver information in a large group setting. They encourage a teacher centered and passive learning environment.[12]

Hence, they are generally perceived as monotonous and boring but can be incorporated with internet technology to offer a blended approach to learning. This approach is considered to be as effective, if not more, as the teacher-driven methods of teaching, such as traditional didactic lectures.[13],[14] Other studies comparing the didactic lectures to active learning have found better academic outcome for students who were engaged through the interactive teaching methods.[15] Studies have also documented that students do not perceive e-learning as a replacement to traditional lectures but as a complement to it. This blended approach offers many advantages such as enhancing learners' interaction with others (collaborative learning) and transforming the role of a teacher to become a facilitator of learning.[13] With the introduction and implementation of the competency-based medical curriculum, the concept of adult learning theory is gaining popularity where the teacher is not just seen as a distributor of knowledge but rather as a facilitator of learning and an assessor of competency.[13] The POLL EVERYWHERE software is a tool to generate polls and is known to maintain anonymity. It can be considered as a tool for e-learning as it uses the communication technologies to offer online quizzes right in the classroom for the purpose of enhancing interactivity in an, otherwise monotonous setting of a traditional lecture. Since dermatology is a highly visual subject utilizing the use of digital clinical photographs for the purpose of teaching, the use of information and technology can be integrated in the traditional teaching curricula to enhance learning easily.[16]

There are many methods of increasing interactivity in a classroom setting. Most common among these are quizzes which are known to stimulate interactivity not just with the teachers but with peers as well. It enhances interpersonal communication skills, leads to enhancement of in-depth understanding of the subject and retention of knowledge.[17] In our study, 87.5% of the students were of the opinion that quizzes enhance interactivity. The findings resonate with the study done by Grover, et al., who had studied the student perception of various interactive activities for learning.[17] In a study by Herbert et al., the students emphasized that the online modules including quizzes promoted understanding, helped to reinforce learning and motivated them.[18] In our study, 35.7% strongly agreed that interactive learning does help in better retention of knowledge. Quizzes enhance learner engagement and thus are very effective for increasing interactivity in a large group setting.[19] In our study, 42.9% students strongly agreed to this fact. In another study utilizing similar technology enriched methodology for enhancing learning, the students perceived their experience as excellent. Seventy-eight percent students were of the opinion that quizzes aided in summarization of concept and consolidation of essential content. More over due to anonymity, 66% students perceived quiz to be an opportunity to learn without the fear of failure.[11]

On doing thematic analysis, it was revealed that our students accepted POLLEVERYWHERE as a method for quiz delivery because the responses were anonymous and hence they were not embarrassed in front of their peers when they attempted the wrong answers. On the other hand, they wanted recognition if their score was good to motivate themselves to learn and improve in the subject.

It is important for the teacher to have an understanding of the motivating factors of learning in the adult learners. In our study, 66.7% of our faculty was of the opinion that interactive learning is an appropriate motivator for the students to do self-directed learning. Students generally take different approaches to learning; deep, strategic or surface approaches. Therefore, it is important to understand what motivates a student to learn better.[12] It is important for the faculty to be sensitized to the various teaching learning methods which will enhance interactivity during the lectures. This will stimulate more active interaction during the didactic lectures if those teaching learning methods are adopted effectively.

  Conclusions Top

Knowing the perceptions of the students regarding the interactive teaching learning methods such as quizzes will encourage the teachers and educators to actively implement this teaching learning method. Incorporating quizzes along with IT (using POLL EVERYWHERE software) into the traditional standardized method of teaching will help to capitalize on the advantages of both the traditional lecture and the quizzes to enhance the educational standards of the undergraduate students in the field of dermatology.

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

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Datta R, Datta K, Venkatesh MD. Evaluation of interactive teaching for undergraduate medical students using a classroom interactive response system in India. Med J Armed Forces India 2015;71:239-45.  Back to cited text no. 5
Cortright RN, Collins HL, Rodenbaugh DW, DiCarlo SE. Student retention of course content is improved by collaborative-group testing. Adv Physiol Educ 2003;27:102-8.  Back to cited text no. 6
Rezende-Filho FM, da Fonseca LJ, Nunes-Souza V, Guedes Gda S, Rabelo LA. A student-centered approach for developing active learning: The construction of physical models as a teaching tool in medical physiology. BMC Med Educ 2014;14:189.  Back to cited text no. 7
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Lujan HL, DiCarlo SE. Too much teaching, not enough learning: What is the solution? Adv Physiol Educ 2006;30:17-22.  Back to cited text no. 10
Jamil Z, Fatima SS, Saeed AA. Preclinical medical students' perspective on technology enhanced assessment for learning. J Pak Med Assoc 2018;68:898-903.  Back to cited text no. 11
Luscombe C, Montgomery J. Exploring medical student learning in the large group teaching environment: Examining current practice to inform curricular development. BMC Med Educ 2016;16:184.  Back to cited text no. 12
Ruiz JG, Mintzer MJ, Leipzig RM. The impact of E-learning in medical education. Acad Med 2006;81:207-12.  Back to cited text no. 13
Duggan PM, Palmer E, Devitt P. Electronic voting to encourage interactive lectures: A randomised trial. BMC Med Educ 2007;7:25.  Back to cited text no. 14
Michael J. Where's the evidence that active learning works? Adv Physiol Educ 2006;30:159-67.  Back to cited text no. 15
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Grover S, Sood N, Chaudhary A. Student perception of peer teaching and learning in pathology: A qualitative analysis of modified seminars, fishbowls, and interactive classroom activities. Indian J Pathol Microbiol 2018;61:537-44.  Back to cited text no. 17
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
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Healy AF, Jones M, Lalchandani LA, Tack LA. Timing of quizzes during learning: Effects on motivation and retention. J Exp Psychol Appl 2017;23:128-37.  Back to cited text no. 19


  [Figure 1]

  [Table 1], [Table 2]


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