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Development and evaluation of an interactive computer–assisted learning program—a novel approach to teaching gynaecological surgery

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Computer Assisted Learning (CAL) is increasingly being recognised as an effective means of teaching and learning. In Gynaecology, the anatomy and surgical steps in vaginal surgery such as vaginal hysterectomy are confusing due to limited access and restricted view of the operative field. The objective of this pilot project was to develop an interactive CAL program on CD–ROM, combining video, illustrations and three–dimensional images to enhance understanding of vaginal hysterectomy in terms of the anatomy and steps of the surgical procedure.

Macromedia Director was used to develop the program. With Director, it is possible to combine text, graphics, animation, video and sound to create interactive material for the web, presentations or CD–ROMS. The CD–ROM takes you through the individual steps of a vaginal hysterectomy combining video clips with voice–over, illustrations and text. The three-dimensional image was included to enhance understanding of the complex relationships between the uterus, bladder and rectum. There is an interactive self–assessment section with multiple–choice questions and an anatomy self–test. The CD–ROM has been evaluated as an educational tool by 12 undergraduate students and 16 trainees in Gynaecology. Most were satisfied with the program. A need for development of further similar educational software has been identified.

The CD–ROM has identified an innovative and useful approach to teaching operative surgery. The results from the evaluation have been positive in terms of the need for similar programs in future.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: St James’s University Hospital, Leeds

Publication date: June 1, 2002

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