Year : 2013  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 103-107

Objective structured practical examination in biochemistry: An experience in Medical College, Kolkata

1 Department of Biochemistry, Medical College, Kolkata, India
2 Department of Biochemistry, R.G. Kar Medical College, Kolkata, India
3 Department of Pathology, Medical College, Kolkata, India
4 Department of Surgery, Medical College, Kolkata, India

Correspondence Address:
Dipankar Kundu
Medical College, College Street, Kolkata 73, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0976-9668.107268

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Background: Undergraduate medical examination is undergoing extensive re evaluation with new core educational objectives being defined. Consequently, new exam systems have also been designed to test the objectives. Objective structured practical examination (OSPE) is one of them. Objectives: To introduce OSPE as a method of assessment of practical skills and learning and to determine student satisfaction regarding the OSPE. Furthermore, to explore the faculty perception of OSPE as a learning and assessment tool. Materials and Methods: The first M.B.B.S students of 2011 12 batch of Medical College, Kolkata, were the subjects for the study. OSPE was organized and conducted on "Identification of Unknown Abnormal Constituents in Urine." Coefficient of reliability of questions administered was done by calculating Cronbach's alpha. A questionnaire on various components of the OSPE was administered to get the feedback. Results: 16 students failed to achieve an average of 50% or above in the assessment. However, 49 students on an average achieved >75%, 52 students achieved between 65% and 75%, and 29 students scored between 50% and 65%. Cronbach's alpha of the questions administered showed to be having high internal consistency with a score of 0.80. Ninety nine percent of students believed that OSPE helps them to improve and 81% felt that this type of assessment fits in as both learning and evaluation tools. Faculty feedback reflected that such assessment tested objectivity, measured practical skills better, and eliminated examiner bias to a greater extent. Conclusion: OSPE tests different desired components of competence better and eliminated examiner bias. Student feedback reflects that such assessment helps them to improve as it is effective both as teaching and evaluation tools.

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