Does Participation in Written Guided Reflective Practice Exercises Affect Readiness for Self-Directed Learning in a Sample of US Anesthesiology Residents?

J Educ Perioper Med. 2019 Apr 1;21(2):E622. eCollection Apr-Jun 2019.


Background: Reflective practice has been identified as one way to increase participation in self-directed lifelong learning so that physicians maintain a level of current and relevant medical knowledge for their practice. This study sought to determine if reflective practice affected the readiness for self-directed learning in a sample of anesthesiology residents in the United States.

Methods: An experimental design was used to employ quantitative methods to investigate the effects of a self-guided 8-week reflective practice exercise on readiness for self-directed learning as measured by Guglielmino's Self-Directed Learning Readiness Scale/Learning Preference Assessment (SDLRS/LPA). Participants were randomly assigned into an experimental group or control group.

Results: Fifty-one anesthesiology residents in 3 residency programs completed this study. No significant difference was found between the posttest SDLRS/LPA scores of the control (median = 227) and experimental group (median = 225; U = 294; z = -.584; P = .559; r = 41.18) as well as the pretest and posttest scores (z = -.65; P = .518; r = -.129) of the experimental group.

Conclusions: We should continue to explore ways to train physicians to engage in practices that promote self-directed lifelong learning.

Keywords: Reflective practice; life-long learning; residents.