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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Dermatology Online Journal

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Motivating medical students by utilizing dermatology-oriented online quizzes


Background: Online quiz competitions can facilitate extra-classroom interactions between faculty and medical students. Owing to decreased class attendance nationwide, teaching faculty might revamp their approach to medical education by providing online resources and methods for communication.

Objective: To explore if the use of online quizzes and social media can result in improved interactions between faculty and students.

Methods: A pilot study conducted from April 7th, 2015 to June 11th, 2015 at Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED) among participants from the second year medical school class. Ten one-question quizzes created using Google Forms were announced over Twitter and email at the rate of one quiz per week. The first correct responder of each quiz chose a five-dollar coffee shop gift card, movie ticket, or a meeting with a NEOMED faculty person as their prize.

Results: An average of 23.8% of the second year medical student class at NEOMED participated per quiz. A total of 80 individuals (55.9%) submitted 340 responses during the competition.Limitations: This is a single-center study with a limited sample size.

Conclusions and Relevance: This study presents a process evaluation for the use of online quiz competitions amongst medical students. Optional online quizzes with small incentives may foster motivational competition among medical students, increase online interactions with faculty, and serve as study material for exams.

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