Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics


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COMSEP Meeting in Ottawa, ON

Poster Presentation:

Impact of Family-Centered Rounds on Medical Student Performance on the NBME Pediatric Subject Examination

Tiffany N. Kimbrough,Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center,Richmond,VA,Victor Heh,Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center,Richmond,VA,Niran R. Wijesooriya,Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center,Richmond,VA,Michael S. Ryan,Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center,Richmond,VA

Background: Family Centered Rounds (FCR) has emerged as the preferred method for rounding in pediatrics.  While there are numerous benefits, several studies have expressed concern that the rounding format may be detrimental to medical students’ knowledge acquisition during the clerkship.  To date, no objective data have been obtained which supports this claim. 

Objectives: The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of FCR on medical student knowledge acquisition by analyzing student performance on the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) Pediatric Shelf Exam over a period when our institution gradually implemented FCR into standard practice.

Methods: This was a retrospective cohort study consisting of third year medical students matriculating at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine from 2009-2014.  Data collected included demographics, USMLE Step 1 and 2 scores, and NBME subject examinations in Pediatrics (PSE), Medicine (MSE) and Surgery (SSE).  A paired t-test was used to determine if there was a significant difference between performance on any two examinations during each academic year.  Pearson moment correlation and bivariate linear regressions were used to determine the relationship between the USMLE and shelf examinations.

Results: Student performance on the PSE could not be statistically differentiated from performance on the MSE for any year except for 2011 (Z-score -0.17, p-value = 0.02).  Student performance on the PSE was better than performance on the SSE (p-value <0.05) for three years during the study period (2009, 2013, and 2014) and not significantly different in all other years.  The PSE was highly correlated with USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 examinations (correlation range 0.56-0.77) for all years. 

Discussion: Our results showed no significant change in PSE performance during a time in which our institution transitioned to FCR.  These findings question the assumption that FCR adversely affect knowledge acquisition obtained during the pediatrics clerkship and should be reassuring for students and clerkship directors.