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Table 4 Student and facilitator responses: “How did CBL build on and compare to the TBL experience?”

From: Scaffolding medical student knowledge and skills: team-based learning (TBL) and case-based learning (CBL)

Theme Example of student comments
Student responses: How did CBL build on and compare to your TBL experience?”
Consolidated knowledge learnt in the TBL and increased students’ understanding of clinical concepts. It helped to consolidate a lot of the knowledge I got from TBL and added on to it.
The whole structure made more sense and the clinical picture was followed through continuously from beginning to end. It gave me a more clinical understanding of the renal conditions that I could not grasp from TBL sessions.
CBLs helped to synthesise learning students have gained in the clinical setting. Students valued gaining insights in different investigations and treatments, and relevant clinical symptoms. Having CBLs right after clinical sessions kept things fresh and was a good way to synthesize what we learned during tutorials.
It helped to expose me to different investigations and treatments I did not know about. It also helped me to pick up on relevant clinical symptoms more easily.
CBL was more focussed, practical knowledge relevant to clinical placements. The shorter time allocation meant we were more focused and felt I was able to maintain focus for the whole session.
The CBL used a lot of the same skills, but was more focused, which was better. More practically useful knowledge, i.e. what is likely pathology given presentation and what tests/exams/Hx to do to rule out DDx
Participants felt that CBL provided an opportunity to clarify any misconceptions that had arisen during the TBL, with the smaller group size ensuring immediate feedback from the facilitator. CBL provided a good opportunity to clarify concepts introduced at TBL. It is a better environment to ask questions. Much more opportunity to be actively involved!
Having a smaller group size with individualised tutors means all questions could be asked on the spot which was a great experience.
Students found the CBLs provided a greater clinical focus, and allowed them to apply the basic sciences. I thought it was good that it was more clinically focussed - a good practice at taking the basic sciences and applying it.
It required me to think more critically about the case compared to TBL. Much better in forming differentials since we do not hang on the weekly topic and narrow down our diagnoses
Since the main focus of TBL is on the basic science, students found the CBL provided greater opportunities to discuss the clinical aspects of the patient case, such as clinical diagnosis and management. CBL is good to view medical conditions with another lens as TBL mainly focuses on basic science and pathophysiology. CBL supplements well with the discussion on clinical diagnosis and management.
It provided an experience to discuss a clinical perspective for different conditions which I feel is beneficial as a way to develop a more concrete understanding of more pathologies. I do not feel it is a replacement for TBL though as the BCS [basic clinical sciences] focus of TBLs is definitely of value in its own way.
Students found TBL provided greater time efficiencies and focussed the clinical discussion. I preferred the CBL experience It was shorter, more clinical based and the group size was more intimate and felt it fostered learning of the clinical aspects of cases which we don’t get as much in lecture learning or in TBLs.
CBL is a better, more efficient, and yet more comprehensive way to teach and foster group work for the medical program.
Some students commented that TBL and CBL each brought their own benefits. CBLs allowed for greater in depth discussion, and TBL provided a structured format to work through the case. I enjoyed both CBLs and TBLs for different reasons. CBLs due to the smaller group size and more personal discussions. TBLs for the better formatting/structure of the case on kuraCloud.
I think CBLs and TBLs went hand in hand and improved my understanding in both sessions.
Increased facilitator contact, with greater opportunities to ask questions and feedback. I like CBL better because you can ask more questions. It was far better. The shorter amount of time and the more one to one teaching was amazing.
Compared to TBL, CBL is more “personal” as we get two tutors per group. It is a better environment to stimulate discussion.
Students valued the constant presence of the tutor with their group and the provision of guided learning from experienced tutors throughout the CBL. Much better than tbls, smaller groups with tutors the whole way through guiding you was better than tutors floating between groups.
More clinic and more efficient than TBLs because of the better tutor to student ratio. It was so much better, I learnt so much more in this setting.
Facilitator responses: How does the CBL build upon student’s experience in the medical program?
Facilitators felt the CBL sessions built on the students’ TBLs by requiring students to apply their basic science knowledge to develop their clinical reasoning, history taking and examination skills. It is a good culmination of relevant skills that mimic a real life situation, requiring students to apply basic science, clinical reasoning and history and examination skills.
I think it adds clinical perspective to material covered in other parts of the program e.g. TBL, lectures and bedside teaching. The CBL seem to tie in clinical skills e.g. examination, history taking with the underlying science/pathophysiology and clinical reasoning.
Tutors felt CBL gave students the opportunity to apply their knowledge to a clinical case. It provides an opportunity to incorporate the knowledge students learnt in lectures and clinical experience from bedside tutorials into a clinical case therefore integrates the learning from the other teaching they have in the program.
Through CBLs, students were able to relate the case to patients they had seen on the wards during the week. Students were able to relate the cases to patients that they had seen on the wards.
Tutors felt there were time efficiencies to CBL. Team based, interactive I believe it fits in well and is an effective use of time at this stage of their skills / knowledge, enhances learners experience. It fits well.