Comparing Student Satisfaction with Traditional and Modular Group Peer-Tutoring Session


Jeff Cross, MD1, Rodney Nyland PhD2, Sarah Lerchenfeldt, PharmD, BCPS, BCOP3

Author Affiliations:

1Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine, Rochester, MI, USA
2Department of Organizational Leadership, School of Education and Human Services, Oakland University, Rochester, MI, USA
3Department of Foundational Medical Studies, Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine, Rochester, MI, USA

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*Corresponding Author: Jeff Cross;

Key Words: education; medical; teaching; tutoring


Background: Our allopathic medical school has utilized a peer-tutoring program since inception in 2011, where second-year medical students teach first-year students in 2-h lecture-style review sessions. In 2015, an alternative format was implemented using four, repeating 30-min modules. This study was designed to compare student satisfaction with both approaches.

Methods: An online survey was emailed to students graduating in 2018 (n = 97) and 2019 (n = 127).

Results: A total of 72 (32.6%) responding students were included in the study, 35 from the class of 2018 (Co2018) and 37 from the class of 2019 (Co2019). Fewer Co2018 students, who received traditional instruction, were ‘very satisfied with the session timing’ compared with Co2019 students, who received the modular format (proportion difference: 0.42; P < 0.001, 95% confidence interval [CI] [0.21–0.63]). Co2018 students were more likely than Co2019 students to stop attending because their time was better utilized another way (proportion difference: 0.22; P = 0.054, 95% CI [-0.003 to 0.45]).

Conclusions: Students preferred the session length and timing of the modular format. Future studies are warranted to evaluate the effectiveness of this approach.

Published: Spring, 2019


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