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ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLE
Year : 2015  |  Volume : 28  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 16-21

Small group learning: Effect on item analysis and accuracy of self-assessment of medical students


1 Biochemistry, LNMC, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
2 Pathology, LNMC, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Shubho Subrata Biswas
Department of Biochemisty, LN Medical College, Bhopal - 462 042, Madhya Pradesh
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/1357-6283.161836

Background: Small group sessions are regarded as a more active and student-centered approach to learning. Item analysis provides objective evidence of whether such sessions improve comprehension and make the topic easier for students, in addition to assessing the relative benefit of the sessions to good versus poor performers. Self-assessment makes students aware of their deficiencies. Small group sessions can also help students develop the ability to self-assess. This study was carried out to assess the effect of small group sessions on item analysis and students' self-assessment. Methods: A total of 21 female and 29 male first year medical students participated in a small group session on topics covered by didactic lectures two weeks earlier. It was preceded and followed by two multiple choice question (MCQ) tests, in which students were asked to self-assess their likely score. The MCQs used were item analyzed in a previous group and were chosen of matching difficulty and discriminatory indices for the pre- and post-tests. Results: The small group session improved the marks of both genders equally, but female performance was better. The session made the items easier; increasing the difficulty index significantly but there was no significant alteration in the discriminatory index. There was overestimation in the self-assessment of both genders, but male overestimation was greater. The session improved the self-assessment of students in terms of expected marks and expectation of passing. Discussion: Small group session improved the ability of students to self-assess their knowledge and increased the difficulty index of items reflecting students' better performance.


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