Prabal Bhargava*, Khine Pwint Phyu, Lim Yin Sear, Punithavathy Shanmuganathan, Benjamin Samraj Prakash Earnest, Anitha Ponnupillai, Joseph Jacob Panikulam, Low Bin Seng and Lim Su-Yin
The rapid transition to exclusive online teaching and learning during the COVID-19 pandemic has uncovered significant challenges to the delivery of undergraduate medical curricula. We aim to evaluate the knowledge, attitude, and experiences of medical students regarding online learning during the pandemic, and to determine whether seniority, prior exposure to online learning, conceptual understanding of e-learning, motivation, perceived support, ability to self-reflect and the presence of anxiety has any significant predictive impact on their responses. A single centre, self-administered online survey was conducted in June 2020. Descriptive statistics were used to summarise the survey findings, while inferential statistics were used to compare the responses by year of study and to determine the response predictors. A total of 192 medical students participated in the study. Two-thirds of students reported pandemic-induced anxiety. Compared to the others, Year 3 students were the most severely affected by the pandemic, and perceived to be least supported, felt least motivated, and reported poorer self-reflection and higher rates of anxiety. An appreciation of the factors that impact on online learning amid the pandemic will help inform curriculum design and educational policies to ensure the continuous delivery of high-quality medical education during this time.
Keywords: COVID-19 pandemic, medical education, online learning, medical student