5 years of experience with a large-scale mentoring program for medical students.
ABSTRACT: In this paper we present our 5-year-experience with a large-scale mentoring program for undergraduate medical students at the Ludwig Maximilians-Universität Munich (LMU). We implemented a two-tiered program with a peer-mentoring concept for preclinical students and a 1:1-mentoring concept for clinical students aided by a fully automated online-based matching algorithm. Approximately 20-30% of each student cohort participates in our voluntary mentoring program. Defining ideal program evaluation strategies, recruiting mentors from beyond the academic environment and accounting for the mentoring network reality remain challenging. We conclude that a two-tiered program is well accepted by students and faculty. In addition the online-based matching seems to be effective for large-scale mentoring programs.
Project description:Objective: The following article presents OFIF, a project that has been running at the medical faculty of the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich (LMU) since 2013. International students of medicine often lag behind their fellow domestic students in terms of language ability and communication skills. To compensate, OFIF offers communication skills courses with an emphasis on exam preparation. Below, we will discuss the project's success, challenges and future opportunities. Methods: In their daily academic routine, communication presents one of the greatest challenges for international students of medicine. With the aid of case scenarios and activities from clinical practice, the project courses teach strategies for effective communication. The methodical concept of the OFIF training is based on the six levels of learning of the revised edition of Bloom's taxonomy. Results: Since 2013, more than 40 trainings and classes for international medical students have been offered. In the winter term of 2017/18, 49 students representing all clinical semesters participated in the OFIF activities. An evaluation of the training classes consistently yielded positive results (95 % of the items were given a score between 9 and 10, on a scale from 1 to 10.) Conclusions: Both the amount of interest (as expressed by the number of actively participating students) and the high percentage of positive evaluations consistently demonstrate that the didactical concept underlying OFIF is useful and could serve as a best practice example for similar projects at other institutions. On the other hand, the 49 participants from all clinical semesters represented but 10 % of the total population of international students in the winter term of 2017/18. Further research examining the concrete effects of OFIF on the academic success of international students at the LMU is therefore desirable.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Social networking sites, in particular Facebook, are not only predominant in students' social life but are to varying degrees interwoven with the medical curriculum. Particularly, Facebook groups have been identified for their potential in higher education. However, there is a paucity of data on user types, content, and dynamics of study-related Facebook groups. OBJECTIVE:The aim of this study was to identify the role of study-related Facebook group use, characterize medical students that use or avoid using Facebook groups (demographics, participation pattern, and motivation), and analyze student posting behavior, covered topics, dynamics, and limitations in Facebook groups with regards to educational usage. METHODS:Using a multi-method approach (interviews, focus groups, and qualitative and quantitative analysis of Facebook posts), we analyzed two representative Facebook groups of medical preclinical semesters at Ludwig-Maximilians-University (LMU) Munich. Facebook primary posts and replies over one semester were extracted and evaluated by using thematic content analysis. We developed and applied a coding scheme for studying the frequency and distribution of these posts. Additionally, we interviewed students with various degrees of involvement in the groups, as well as "new minorities," students not registered on Facebook. RESULTS:Facebook groups seem to have evolved as the main tool for medical students at LMU to complement the curriculum and to discuss study-related content. These Facebook groups are self-organizing and quickly adapt to organizational or subject-related challenges posed by the curriculum. A wide range of topics is covered, with a dominance of organization-related posts (58.35% [6916/11,853] of overall posts). By measuring reply rates and comments per category, we were able to identify learning tips and strategies, material sharing, and course content discussions as the most relevant categories. Rates of adequate replies in these categories ranged between 78% (11/14) and 100% (13/13), and the number of comments per post ranged from 8.4 to 13.7 compared with the average overall reply rate of 68.69% (1167/1699) and 3.9 comments per post. User typology revealed social media drivers (>30 posts per semester) as engines of group function, frequent users (11-30 posts), and a majority of average users acting rather as consumers or lurkers (1-10 posts). CONCLUSIONS:For the moment, the medical faculty has no active involvement in these groups and therefore no influence on accuracy of information, professionalism, and ethical issues. Nevertheless, faculty could in the future benefit by extracting relevant information, identifying common problems, and understanding semester-related dynamics.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:Mobility limitations have a multitude of different negative consequences on elderly patients including decreasing opportunities for social participation, increasing the risk for morbidity and mortality. However, current healthcare has several shortcomings regarding mobility sustainment of older adults, namely a narrow focus on the underlying pathology, fragmentation of care across services and health professions and deficiencies in personalising care based on patients' needs and experiences. A tailored healthcare strategy targeted at mobility of older adults is still missing. OBJECTIVE:The objective is to develop multiprofessional care pathways targeted at mobility sustainment and social participation in patients with vertigo/dizziness/balance disorders (VDB) and osteoarthritis (OA) . METHODS:Data regarding quality of life, mobility limitation, pain, stiffness and physical function is collected in a longitudinal observational study between 2017 and 2019. General practitioners (GPs) recruit their patients with VDB or OA. Patients who visited their GP in the last quarter will be identified in the practice software based on VDB and OA-related International Classification of Diseases 10th Revision. Study material will be sent from the practice to patients by mail. Six months and 12 months after baseline, all patients will receive a mail directly from the study team containing the follow-up questionnaire. GPs fill out questionnaires regarding patient diagnostics, therapy and referrals. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION:The study was approved by the ethical committee of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München and of the Technische Universität Dresden. Results will be published in scientific, peer-reviewed journals and at national and international conferences. Results will be disseminated via newsletters, the project website and a regional conference for representatives of local and national authorities.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:The corona disease (COVID-19) is developing into one of the greatest challenges for healthcare professionals around the world. In this article, we report the detailed actions taken in the Department of Conservative Dentistry and Periodontology, University Hospital, Ludwig-Maximilians-University (LMU), Munich, Germany, during the early phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. MATERIAL AND METHODS:After a joint on-site inspection of the dental clinic with the Department of Clinical Microbiology and Hospital Hygiene, existing clinical and hygiene protocols were adapted for COVID-19 patients. RESULTS:A comprehensive summary of the preparation of the facilities as well as pre- treatment, treatment and posttreatment protocols are described and arising problems are being discussed. CONCLUSIONS:The importance of rigorous hygiene and treatment protocols as well as a sufficient supply of PPE for dental offices and hospitals is highlighted. The measures reported may be subject to change due to the dynamics of the pandemic. CLINICAL RELEVANCE:The modes of transmission of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (e.g., droplets, aerosols, and fomites) can pose a risk for dental healthcare professionals and patients alike. The presented measures may guide dental faculties and dental practices during the early stage of the COVID-19 crisis.
Project description:<b>Objective:</b> To avert staff shortages during the first wave of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in spring 2020, the medical faculties of the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (LMU) appealed to their students to volunteer for relief work. In this study, we examine the influence of psychological factors on the students' decisions to respond to this call or not. <b>Methodology:</b> We report on a cross-sectional study based on an online survey among medical students at the TUM and LMU. The survey consisted of a questionnaire containing items on motivation and other factors related to the decision for or against volunteering. Questions were also asked about anxieties regarding COVID-19 and the occurrence of depressive symptoms, as well as about resilience. <b>Results:</b> Responses from 244 participants were analysed. Students' decisions to volunteer revealed both altruistic and introjected motivations. For those students who did not volunteer, time overlaps and workload related to other activities played an important role. Between the two groups, no significant difference was detected in terms of their resilience and COVID-19-related anxieties. However, the non-volunteering students reported a significantly higher prevalence of depressive symptoms. <b>Conclusion:</b> Sense of duty and the desire to help were, according to the students, the most important reasons for volunteering. Depressive symptoms and lack of time made volunteering less likely. Resilience and COVID-19-related anxieties do not seem to have had any influence on the decision to volunteer or not.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:Although chronic non-bacterial osteitis (CNO) is an ever-increasingly recognised illness in the paediatric community and the adult healthcare community, a study to assess diagnosing, treatment and the psychosocial aspect of CNO from a large population pool was not available. We aimed to investigate CNO from the patient perspective. DESIGN:Health services research, patient survey. SETTING:Ludwig-Maximilians-University (LMU) Pediatric Rheumatology Department CNO Conferences held in June 2013 and June 2015. PARTICIPANTS:Using a patient survey developed by the LMU Pediatric Rheumatology Department, 105 patients from ages 5 to 63 years were assessed regarding CNO to include epidemiological data, medical history and treatment, initial symptoms, diagnostic procedures, current symptoms, associated diseases, current treating physicians, absences in school and work due to illness and the impact of illness on patient, family and friends. RESULTS:Active CNO was reported in 90% of patients present, with 73% being women and 27% being men. An overwhelming majority (70%) reported being diagnosed within 18 months of onset of symptoms; however, the initial diagnoses were wide-ranged to include malignancies in 36% to bacterial osteomyelitis in 30%, where the majority were treated with an antibiotic and/or were biopsied. When asked about the psychosocial aspect of this illness, 83% reported that non-bacterial osteitis (NBO) negatively impacted the family, 79% reported that NBO has negatively affected either school or work and 56% reported a negative impact on friendships. CONCLUSION:Delay of diagnosis, living with differential diagnoses like malignancies and finding specialists for medical care are a few examples of what leads patients into searching for more information. The negative impact on daily life including family relationships, friendships and work/school highlights a need for better psychosocial support such as guidance counselling or psychological support due to three-quarters of patients receiving no such said support.
Project description:To explore the mentoring program on a subset of Pakistani medical students in a private medical college.Total students targeted were 300 MBBS students of 1st Year (group B), 2nd Year (group C) and 3rd Year (group D), of these 256 students filled the self-reported questionnaire. The questionnaire was based on Likert Scale. The statements in the questionnaire are designed in a positive manner so that if the students agree to them the level of satisfaction with the mentoring program was considered significantly good. Open-ended questionnaires were also given so as to have a clearer concept of the students' perception. This study is a mixed method study catering to both quantitative and qualitative domains.The overall results reported that the junior students of group B and group C showed higher satisfaction in being mentored as compared group D (p-value=0.001). All three groups were compared with each other to check the response of every statement by applying Tukey's test. Analysis of the result showed that majority of the students considered mentoring program a beneficial tool for their academic and non-academic lives. The students of all three years have reported that the mentor is mostly available and helps to reconcile internal conflicts. They also confirmed that their mentor keeps records but most of the students have reported that communication via email is limited.Majority of students of Bahria University Medical and Dental College are able to carry on with their academic and non-academic routine due to the presence of mentoring. The medical students appreciated the presence of a mentor during thick and thin; they have also accepted that it is due to the presence of this guide that they are able to continue with their difficult studies in these difficult times.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Despite increasing recognition that mentoring is essential early in medical careers, little is known about the prevalence of mentoring programs for medical students. We conducted this study to survey all medical schools in Germany regarding the prevalence of mentoring programs for medical students as well as the characteristics, goals and effectiveness of these programs.<h4>Methods</h4>A definition of mentoring was established and program inclusion criteria were determined based on a review of the literature. The literature defined mentoring as a steady, long-lasting relationship designed to promote the mentee's overall development. We developed a questionnaire to assess key characteristics of mentoring programs: the advocated mentoring model, the number of participating mentees and mentors, funding and staff, and characteristics of mentees and mentors (e.g., level of training). In addition, the survey characterized the mentee-mentor relationship regarding the frequency of meetings, forms of communication, incentives for mentors, the mode of matching mentors and mentees, and results of program evaluations. Furthermore, participants were asked to characterize the aims of their programs. The questionnaire consisted of 34 questions total, in multiple-choice (17), numeric (7) and free-text (10) format. This questionnaire was sent to deans and medical education faculty in Germany between June and September 2009. For numeric answers, mean, median, and standard deviation were determined. For free-text items, responses were coded into categories using qualitative free text analysis.<h4>Results</h4>We received responses from all 36 medical schools in Germany. We found that 20 out of 36 medical schools in Germany offer 22 active mentoring programs with a median of 125 and a total of 5,843 medical students (6.9 - 7.4% of all German medical students) enrolled as mentees at the time of the survey. 14 out of 22 programs (63%) have been established within the last 2 years. Six programs (27%) offer mentoring in a one-on-one setting. 18 programs (82%) feature faculty physicians as mentors. Nine programs (41%) involve students as mentors in a peer-mentoring setting. The most commonly reported goals of the mentoring programs include: establishing the mentee's professional network (13 programs, 59%), enhancement of academic performance (11 programs, 50%) and counseling students in difficulties (10 programs, 45%).<h4>Conclusions</h4>Despite a clear upsurge of mentoring programs for German medical students over recent years, the overall availability of mentoring is still limited. The mentoring models and goals of the existing programs vary considerably. Outcome data from controlled studies are needed to compare the efficiency and effectiveness of different forms of mentoring for medical students.
Project description:Surgical disciplines are affected by an increasing shortage of young doctors. Studies show that formerly interested students decide against a career in surgical disciplines at the end of their studies or during practical year. Measures to counteract this development are urgently needed. As a joint project between gynecology, urology, and general surgery, SOCIUS mentoring was designed to prepare and encourage students for a career in surgical oncology. The structured curriculum of SOCIUS mentoring contains six modules, including surgical skills, soft skills, mentoring, theory, clinical visitation, and congress participation and runs over one year. Effects on confidence towards physician skills and plans for a future career were evaluated with questionnaires. After participation, students reported increased confidence in surgical and soft skills. In addition, participants noted that they have specified their career goals and gained more confidence in surgery, as well as seeing more development potential for a career in surgery. We describe the implementation of a novel extracurricular program for motivated students that combines individual mentoring with surgical and soft skills training. Due to its modular structure, this concept can easily be transferred to other disciplines. SOCIUS mentoring, with its combination of mentoring and skills training, is a promising measure to prepare and motivate students for their surgical career and thus counteract the shortage of young talent.
Project description:ABSTRACT The Covid-19 pandemic induced a radical shift towards digitally enhanced learning and teaching (DELT). Success of this adaptation depended on how much DELT had been provided before. The Bavarian Virtual University (BVU) is a university network to fund, promote and support DELT. The Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich as a part of this network implemented the DELT course “Shared decision making (SDM) - a part of evidence-based medicine” in 2015. Based on regular evaluations and due to the latest developments, a media-didactic and content-related adaptation will be conducted now. Clinical cases will be embedded in a framework structure of SDM. Videos, podcasts and literature of doctor–patient interaction will be provided. To enable different health care professions to have a positive learning experience, the course will be linguistically adapted. The interaction between students and teacher will be enhanced by a transparent distribution of tasks and an issue-specific chat forum. SDM is an interdisciplinary general concept. With regard to the academization of different health care professions, the demand for DELT will increase. However, medical competencies can`t be taught fully online, since face-to-face patient interaction is mandatory. Communication skills can be practiced theoretically but have to be applied in reality.