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Educación Médica

Print version ISSN 1575-1813


DIAZ-VELIZ, Gabriela et al. Medical students' perception of the educational environment in a faculty developing a traditional curriculum (UCH-Chile) and another with a problem based learning curriculum (UNC-Argentina). Educ. méd. [online]. 2011, vol.14, n.1, pp.27-34. ISSN 1575-1813.

Aim: To assess and compare the perception about the educational environment of medical students from two Latin-American universities, University of Chile (UCH) and National University of Cuyo (UNC), which develop a traditional curriculum and a problem based curriculum, respectively. Subjects and methods: A transversal study was performed in 465 students: 232 from the UCH and 233 from the UNC. The distribution was 84/70 for the first course, 77/97 for the third one and 71/66 for the fifth one, respectively. The DREEM questionnaire, which consists of 50 items, was applied. It covers 5 dimensions of the educational environment: perception about learning, perception about teachers, academic self-perception, perception about educational climate and social self-perception. Results: Total DREEM scores were significantly higher in the UNC. Scores were similar in all courses from both universities, with the exception of fifth course UCH. Regarding their perception about teachers, students of the fifth course UCH showed the lowest score, whereas students of the first course UNC had the best perception. Similar results were obtained for the academic auto-perception; while the perception of the learning environment obtained higher scores in the three courses from the UNC. Social auto-perception was similar in all courses tested in this study. Conclusions: Differences observed between both universities could be attributed to their different curricula. Problem based curriculum seems to be better appreciated than the traditional one. Our study corroborates the efficacy of the DREEM questionnaire to identify strengths and weaknesses of the curriculum and for the assessment of teaching quality in medical schools.

Keywords : Curriculum; DREEM; Educational environment; Medical students; Student perceptions; Teaching.

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