Online Lectures for Students in Dermatology: A Replacement for Traditional Teaching or a Valuable Addition?

J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2009 Sep;23(9):1039-43. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-3083.2009.03246.x. Epub 2009 Apr 2.


Introduction/objective: Although the Internet, podcasts and multimedia have become a natural part of our life, these instruments still do not find widespread use in medical education. We aimed to increase the percentage of students benefiting from our lectures during their 6-month principal training period in dermatology by making lectures available online.

Methods: To establish a baseline, we started to count and calculate the average percentage of students attending face to face classes. For the next semester, with a new student generation, we made recordings of about half of the lectures and made them available online. After this testing period, we informed the next new student population at the beginning of the following semester that all lectures would be recorded and made available online. Students' attendance was documented during these periods, and in addition, questionnaires were used to assess students' acceptance and use of the online lectures.

Results: At the end of the project, 66% of the students (n = 256) indicated that they had used the online lectures, and 12% of all students stated that they were usually unable to attend lectures due to conflicting obligations, but could now participate thanks to the e-learning programme. An additional 44.9% of all respondents indicated that they welcomed the e-learning programme as a way to view specific lectures. The average attendance of face-to-face lectures did not decrease.

Conclusion: Online lectures in dermatology were highly welcomed by our students and may be a good means to improve the education of students in dermatology.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Dermatology / education*
  • Education, Medical / methods
  • Education, Medical / trends*
  • Educational Measurement
  • Humans
  • Internet
  • Online Systems / trends*
  • Software
  • Students, Medical / psychology