Chair: Iain Robinson, Co-chair: Kevin Brandom | 9th March 2021, 12:30 -15:30 (UK’s time)
Formative Assessment in Pathology Education: How Both Learners and Teachers Could Benefit.
Pathology education in medical school has become the cornerstone of basic sciences in Medicine. Pathology integrates into all the basic science courses and therefore it becomes important that students in medical school apply Pathology education to their prior knowledge. The course content in Pathology is huge and becomes difficult for students to remember all the important concepts and connect them to what they have learnt in their earlier courses. Formative assessments become a useful tool for students learning the material, and also guides teachers to build up the course.
Summary of Work
At UMHS, Pathology is covered over two semesters of 15 weeks each. Pathology 1 covers General Pathology, Hematology, and Blood vessel Pathology, and Pathology covers systemic Pathology. Students have 3 summative exams in each semester. Formative assessments were given on Examsoft at the end of the week or on completion of a major topic. Summary of results: Grades from formative and summative assessments were tabulated. Comparing the scores obtained in Formative and Summative assessment showed that students show a better performance in graded assessment. Examsoft item analysis was used to compare formative and summative assessment. It was noted that students improved their scores in graded exams, and were able to answer more complex questions.
Discussion and Conclusions
Formative assessment works well in Pathology education, as teachers could gauge student learning and make course corrections to include concepts that students struggle with.
Take home message
Teaching must be followed by evaluation. Summative evaluation tends to create performance fear among students. These factors influence academic grades and may not truly reflect student's aptitude. Formative assessment allows students to learn from mistakes without being penalized and also helps teachers in knowing weak areas in student's learning. which could be reinforced.