MEDICAL STUDENTS AND BASIC MEDICAL SCIENCES FACULTIES' PERCEPTION OF HANDWRITTEN INDIVIDUAL ASSIGNMENTS AS A TOOL FOR LEARNING AND A METHOD OF ASSESSMENT
Abdulrhman M. Kamel* and Alani A. H.
Objective: The aim of this study is to assess the perception of students and staff about handwritten assignments as a tool of learning and a method of medical student assessment. Design: A Cross-Sectional study to evaluate knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) of medical students and teaching staff of Basic Medical Sciences (BMS). Data analysis was carried out using Statistical Program for Social Sciences (SPSS) Version 17. Setting: Two Medical Schools in Khartoum State, Republic of the Sudan, during the period of Nov. 2013 and Feb. 2014. Results: A total of 280 medical students and 31 teaching staff members of BMS participated in this Study. Results showed that the majority of students wrote their assignments through mixing between references and their own styles (60%) and depending mainly on textbooks (62%) compared with other resources. In addition, (40%) of students used to copy/paste the information and (46%) did not write their assignments in regular arrangement i.e. introduction, body, conclusion and references. On the other hand, (55%) of the teaching staff considered handwritten assignments as a fourth in terms of importance; based on a scale out of four we proposed to compare it with other common assessment methods, However, they requested these assignments mainly as for self-learning purposes. Furthermore, (65%) of teaching staff preferred handwritten over typed assignments. Students were given three marks for formulating regular arrangement formulation and six marks as a discount for plagiarism. Conclusions: The results of our study suggest that a handwritten assignment is one of the methods that facilitate learning and enhance its process. In addition, Feedback shall be considered to promote students learning.[Full Text Article]