Background In Yorkshire and the Humber, all ophthalmic specialist trainees must complete a simulated laser skills course. We presume effectiveness, based on evidence that simulation successfully transfers technical skills (Cook et al 2011). Trainees utilise e-learning, a virtual reality laser simulator and simulated targets on real laser machinery. While data exists on confidence and satisfaction with the course, we now hope to assess knowledge transfer.
Methods Previous candidates will be invited to complete an online survey, rating aspects of their practice following the course. Candidates attending the next 3 iterations of the simulation laser skills course are expected to complete a pre-course questionnaire assessing laser experience and confidence, as well as knowledge. The questions include Likert scales for confidence and a "true or false" format for knowledge, reflecting the e-learning. Sample questions will be included in the poster, once they have been reviewed and validated by ophthalmologists working in the field of laser treatment. The questionnaire will be repeated at the end of the laser course, replacing the simple feedback forms currently in use.
Anticipated outcomes Current feedback forms suggest candidates enjoyed the course, and we expect that they will report changing their practice in the months following completion. Future candidates are expected to demonstrate increased knowledge and confidence following access to structured technical skills simulation training, beyond that achieved by e-learning alone.
Potential impact While retrospective data can reassure stakeholders that the course is well-received, prospective data assessing knowledge transfer provides a more robust measure of effectiveness. This data can support the deanery in maintaining funding for the course and its position within the regional training programme. Increasing emphasis on simulation in surgical training may lead to these methods being transferred to other regions, or the national laser simulation course held at Royal College of Ophthalmology annual Congress.
Cook DA, Hatala R, Brydges R, et al. Technology-enhanced simulation for health professions education. JAMA 2011;306:978–88
- Category: Course or curriculum evaluation/innovation/integration
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