Jonathan Gold, MD, Olga Olowolafe, AS, Ann Taft, BS, David Solomon, PhD, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI
Background: The Computer-Assisted Learning in Pediatrics Program (CLIPP) is a nationally recognized peer-reviewed web-based program designed to meet the goals of the national COMSEP (Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics) curriculum and utilized by the majority of pediatric clerkships in the United States. While several studies have demonstrated student satisfaction with the use of CLIPP, no studies have looked at whether time and effort dedicated to the CLIPP program correlated with NBME scores or other graded clerkship components. Methods: Over two academic years we collected data on the number of CLIPP cases completed (the minimum requirement at our institution is ten) and the time spent on the cases for all pediatric clerkship students. We then compared this time with scores on the NBME pediatric subject examination and other graded clerkship components. We also surveyed students regarding their opinions regarding the quality and utility of the CLIPP cases. Results: We analyzed data on 237 students over two years. 24.9% of students completed only the minimum required cases, 26.6% completed between one and three additional cases, 31.2% completed between four and seven additional cases, and 17.3% completed eight or more additional cases. There was no correlation between the number of optional cases completed and the NBME exam score. When comparing the total time spent on CLIPP cases and the NBME exam score, there was a small negative correlation (R=-0.148). Students were satisfied with the CLIPP cases (rating 4.11 on a 5-point Likert scale) but found them slightly less helpful in preparing for the NBME exam (rating 3.80). Conclusion: While students are satisfied with the CLIPP cases and the majority does more than the required number, they are less enthusiastic about their ability to help them prepare for the NBME exam. Objective data supports their perception that devoting more time to the cases does not improve their performance. Further research may demonstrate that CLIPP cases help in other aspects of the pediatric clerkship such as clinical performance.