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Mapping for meaning: using concept maps to integrate clinical and basic sciences in medical education

In which way and to which extent is integration articulated in concept maps and which factors affect the resulting concept maps? By which factors is the perceived usefulness of such concept maps affected?

Sylvia Vink
25 September 2014
Fulltext in Leiden University Repository
  Medical curricula are intended to help students to relate clinical and basic science knowledge. Localizing underlying basic science mechanisms allows teacher and students to focus on relevant relations with clinical phenomena. Concept maps are promising for medical education because of the potential to articulate integration of clinical and basic sciences. We examined therefore whether and to which extent integration of clinical and basic sciences is articulated in concept maps of groups of clinicians and basic scientists with different expertise levels and developed a framework of features that described integration. The concept maps of the groups of residents and basic scientists in training appeared to articulate integration to a higher extent than the concept maps of experienced clinicians and basic scientists. Clarifications for these results were found in the process of construction and the way the groups shared and communicated their knowledge. Investigation of both concept maps and the concept mapping process resulted in recommendations to improve instructions and procedure. In addition to the construction of concept maps, the usefulness of these concept maps for medical education is explored, by taking into account the views of both constructors and teachers who were not involved in the construction process.

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