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Herrmann, Florian E. M.; Lenski, Markus; Steffen, Julius; Kailuweit, Magdalena; Nikolaus, Marc; Koteeswaran, Rajasekaran; Sailer, Andreas; Hanszke, Anna; Wintergerst, Maximilian; Dittmer, Sissi; Mayr, Doris; Genzel-Boroviczény, Orsolya; Eley, Diann S.; Fischer, Martin R. (2015): A survey study on student preferences regarding pathology teaching in Germany: a call for curricular modernization. In: BMC Medical Education 15:94


Background Pathology is a discipline that provides the basis of the understanding of disease in medicine. The past decades have seen a decline in the emphasis laid on pathology teaching in medical schools and outdated pathology curricula have worsened the situation. Student opinions and thoughts are central to the questions of whether and how such curricula should be modernized. Methods A survey was conducted among 1018 German medical students regarding their preferences in pathology teaching modalities and their satisfaction with lecture-based courses. A qualitative analysis was performed comparing a recently modernized pathology curriculum with a traditional lecture-based curriculum. The differences in modalities of teaching used were investigated. Results Student satisfaction with the lecture-based curriculum positively correlated with student grades (spearman’s correlation coefficient 0.24). Additionally, students with lower grades supported changing the curriculum (spearman’s correlation coefficient 0.47). The majority supported virtual microscopy, autopsies, seminars and podcasts as preferred didactic methods. Conclusions The data supports the implementation of a pathology curriculum where tutorials, autopsies and supplementary computer-based learning tools play important roles.