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2018 Conference on Medical Student Education

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P11 Students as Peer Educators: A Needs Analysis and Results of a Pilot Teaching Skills Workshop

Leslie Smebak; Hunter Eason

02/2/18 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM Austin Grand Ballroom J-K

Nearly all medical schools across the United States, including the Pritzker School of Medicine, employ medical student peer educators (PEs) in preclinical medical education. However, fewer than half of medical schools provide teaching skills or other types of training. We conducted a needs analysis of PEs and preclinical basic science course directors to determine the potential benefit of and priorities for a teaching skills curriculum for PEs. A focus group of fourth-year PEs and an anonymous survey of peer educators and course directors were conducted. Qualitative analysis of the focus group and descriptive statistics of the survey results were performed. The peer educator survey (RR=40.4%) demonstrated that only 22% of PEs received teaching skills training; however, 72% said they would benefit from training focused on actionable skills, like teaching in unstructured environments and engaging struggling learners. Only one out of 12 course directors surveyed provides training to PEs, but all course directors agreed that a curriculum would be beneficial to PE performance. Overall, the needs analysis demonstrated that PEs would benefit from a teaching skills curriculum. Our continued work involves building a PE teaching skills curriculum, with a pilot course planned for Fall 2017.

Upon completion of this session, participants should be able to:

  1. List the roles and benefits of peer educators in undergraduate medical education.
  2. Enumerate the skills required for success as a peer educator.
  3. Understand the preferences of students, peer educators, and faculty for a peer educator skills workshop.


Copyright 2018 by Society of Teachers of Family Medicine