This paper describes the analysis of the written professional examinations administered at the Medical School, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), during the academic year 1979-80. It is a product of a collaborative activity involving medical teachers and two short-term consultants of the World Health Organization. The examination papers were analysed in order to identify content areas disproportionately emphasized in the examinations; to determine the quality and appropriateness of the examination items used; and to review the extent of continuity and integration across departments and courses. This paper is intended to introduce an approach to curriculum review which is based on analysis of the examination system. The procedures and sample outcomes are described and the implications for curriculum development and evaluation are discussed.
The suitability of physiology topics taught in the first-year dental curriculum needs to be investigated in the light of the view of the present generation of clinical and preclinical teachers, and students. This was studied in the University of Malaya in order to propose a rational physiology curriculum with proper identification of priority topics. Oral physiology, blood and the cardiovascular system were found to be the most relevant for dental students. Among the systems, high and low priority topics were identified and their relative importance is discussed.
The knowledge and clinical and minor surgical skills acquired by 257 medical students in three universities in Sri Lanka and Malaysia were assessed by a questionnaire after they had completed their training period in ophthalmology. This study showed that many medical students graduating from these universities lacked the basic clinical and minor surgical skills essential for a doctor practising in a community in south-east Asia. The responses also indicated that teaching by consultants in all three universities was inadequate and due to these inadequacies the students requested that the duration of their training period be doubled. Ophthalmology is an important component of clinical practice and proper education in this subject is important. An urgent revision of the aims and objectives of the curriculum in ophthalmology is essential to place greater emphasis on this important and much neglected subject, for which very little curricular time is allotted.
A random survey of 400 doctors was carried out over a period of 3 months to determine the factors that would facilitate or inhibit the participation of doctors in continuing medical education (CME) in Malaysia. Regular participation in CME was defined as participation in any activity (self-directed reading or attending organized activities) at least once a month during the past year. It was found that 78% of doctors regularly participated in CME. Working in a hospital environment and being members of the Malaysian Medical Association and at least one specialty organization appeared to be important facilitatory factors in CME participation. These doctors also read the local medical journals regularly and subscribed to other journals. In addition, they were more likely to possess postgraduate qualifications and would have teaching, research, diagnostic or clinical responsibilities as major components of their work. They were more likely to practise in the big cities and would tend to be active in at least one voluntary or social organization. If they were in the Government sector, they were more likely to work in the Universities or in the Hospital Division of the Ministry of Health. The 22% who were less likely to participate in CME were general practitioners in the private sector. They worked long hours with day, evening and/or night shifts every day. If the doctors were in the Government sector, they were more likely to be in the Health Division, working in administration and public health, or they were in the armed forces and other organizations such as local councils. They worked in the smaller towns or in the districts.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
This study deals with personality variables of medical students in relation to their academic success in the preclinical stage. One hundred and one students completed the 16PF Questionnaire at the beginning of their medical course and the scores were analysed in relation to their marks obtained at the end of the 2-year preclinical stage. This study shows that the 16PF Questionnaire can be a useful instrument for identifying personality variables in candidates who are likely to have academic problems and those who are likely to do well in the preclinical stage of a medical course. Students of urban origin and the eldest in the family performed better in their preclinical years. Performance was not related to sex, ethnic group, family size of entrance qualification into medicine. Personality variables of being enthusiastic, venturesome, self-opinionated, imaginative, experimenting, resourceful and driven correlate positively with performance, whereas being self-assured has negative correlation. Problem students were more reserved, emotionally less stable and more apprehensive than non-problem students.
The competence of general practitioners (GPs) in diagnosing anxiety neurosis was assessed using standardized patients (SPs) unknown to the doctors. Out of a computer-generated random sample of 100 general practitioners in Kuala Lumpur, 42 volunteered to participate in the study. The results showed that the GPs can be divided into three groups: group A made the correct diagnosis and informed the SPs about their condition (11.9%); group B prescribed tranquillizers and did not inform the SPs of the actual diagnosis but instead said that they were either normal or were suffering from some stress (28.6%); and group C made various diagnoses of physical disorder or did not detect any abnormality at all (59.5%). Thus about 40% of the doctors considered an emotion-related disorder and only 12% of the doctors were confident enough to make and inform the patient of the actual diagnosis. Group A significantly (P < 0.001) asked higher numbers of relevant questions in the signs and symptoms section of the history than the other two groups. No differences between the three groups were observed in the other two sections of history-taking (personality, family, social and precipitating factors), in the general and specific physical examination and interpersonal skills. Generally, with the exception of the interpersonal skills section, the doctors performed less than 40% of the expected tasks in every section. The study highlighted the lack of competence in making a definite diagnosis of anxiety disorder. Among those who apparently made the diagnosis (group B) or made the diagnosis with certainty (group A), there was no demonstration of appropriate treatment behaviour with respect to pharmacological intervention.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
In the government hospitals of Malaysia quality assurance activities have been introduced since 1985. Local clinicians and other health care workers had been stimulated by the Ministry of Health to pursue these activities, but they found themselves untrained and ill-prepared for the job. With the help of the World Health Organization a programme of training courses has been set up and conducted, most recently, in February 1989. A model for teaching quality assurance was developed, geared towards the needs of the Malaysian clinicians and taking into account the recent progress made in the development of quality assurance approaches worldwide. Moreover, quality assurance results from one Malaysian hospital were used, thus increasing the relevance of the teaching. Results show that Malaysian clinicians have appreciated the training and have relaxed in their attitude towards quality assurance and the government's involvement in it. During the various courses pitfalls have been identified in the teaching of modern quality assurance in health care for audiences from developing and newly industrialized countries.