A comparison of self-perceived competencies of traditional and reformed curriculum graduates 6 years after graduation

Med Teach. 2012;34(7):562-8. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2012.675457. Epub 2012 Apr 11.


Background: In 1996, the University of Liverpool reformed its medical course from a traditional lecture-based programme to an integrated, community based PBL curriculum based on the recommendations in Tomorrow's Doctors (General Medical Council, 1993).

Aim: A project has been underway since 2000 to evaluate this change.

Methods: This article will summarize questionnaires which were distributed to the final two cohorts to graduate from the traditional curriculum with the first two cohorts to graduate from the reformed curriculum 6 years after graduation. The questionnaires asked the graduates about their preparation for the key skills required to work as doctors.

Results: There were significant differences between reformed and traditional curriculum graduates on nearly all the questionnaire variables. Reformed curriculum graduates felt significantly better prepared for undertaking practical procedures, working in a team, understanding evidence-based medicine. The traditional graduates felt better prepared in variables relating to basic sciences such as understanding disease processes.

Conclusion: Reforming the curriculum can change the way graduates from the same medical school view their undergraduate education.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence / standards*
  • Curriculum / trends
  • Education, Medical / methods*
  • Education, Medical / trends
  • England
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Physicians / psychology*
  • Problem-Based Learning / methods*
  • Problem-Based Learning / trends
  • Program Evaluation
  • Self Efficacy
  • Self-Assessment*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires