T I Lemon
T I Lemon. Study Into Midwifes Perspective Of Potential Peer Teaching Between Midwifery And Medical Students . The Internet Journal of Medical Student Research. 2013 Volume 1 Number 1.
Inter professional teaching has been common place in medical education for many years now. Peer to peer teaching is also actively encouraged between medical students. However peer to peer teaching between health courses (i.e. medical student and midwifery student) is not common practice although it may be of benefit to all parties involved.
The aim of this small questionnaire study was to investigate qualified midwifes perception of medical student’s knowledge compared to midwifery students. By establishing this it was hoped a conclusion as to whether midwifery students were suitable to be involved in peer to peer teaching with medical students.
Qualified midwifes at two hospitals in South Wales were asked to respond to a poll, n=16 responded. Of these 16 midwifes the mean length of qualification was 9.3 years (5-32 years range). At the time of the questionnaire 9/16 (56%) of midwives had a student attached to them. Midwifery students were attached to these midwifes on a 2:1 (6:3) ratio compared with Medical students.
88% (14/16) midwifes felt midwifery students’ knowledge of obstetrics was better than that of the medical students attached to them. 81% (13/16) of respondents thought the lack of clinical exposure prior to the Obstetrics and Gynaecology (O and G) placement had a negative impact on Medical student knowledge. 94% (15/16) midwives felt that medical students would benefit from shadowing and learning with a midwifery student whilst on placement.
To the authors knowledge this is the first questionnaire study of its kind, Limitations of this pilot study included the questionnaire and the survey size. Drawing from the results and anecdotal evidence, medical students appear to have considerably less knowledge relating to obstetrics and gynaecology compared to midwifery students. This is explained by the fact midwifery students study intensively in this focal area of medicine, and many medical students only have a brief 5 week placement period in O and G in their 5 year course. As such, medical students should capitalize on their O and G clinical placement by undertaking integrated learning and teaching with midwifery students.
Not only would this integration improve both midwifery and medical student knowledge base, it could lead to improved inter professional clinical relationships between these parties in the future.1,2 The authors advocate integrated midwifery and medical student learning whilst on placement as a means of combating the limitations of segregated learning and improving the interdisciplinary working relationship.
A. Owens, J, Boylan and T. Yule