The Pedagogical Shift During COVID 19 Pandemic: Online Medical Education, Barriers and Perceptions in Central Kerala

J Med Educ Curric Dev. 2020 Aug 19;7:2382120520951795. doi: 10.1177/2382120520951795. eCollection Jan-Dec 2020.


Owing to COVID 19 pandemic, all educational institutions including medical colleges were closed by the second week of March 2020 in Kerala, India. This college started online classes using various e-platforms by the third week of March. In this study, we report the barriers and perceptions of undergraduate students by an online questionnaire after 2.5 months of e-classes. The study participants were 364 students who responded in a week's time. Most of the faculty used platforms like Google class room or recorded YouTube videos. The department of Physiology used the Impartus platform. Among the respondents 72.8% were using mobile data and 17.8% were using broadband facilities. Among network providers Jio was the most used. Only first year students were exposed to 3 different online platforms. Among those students, 63.6% reported in favor of Impartus, followed by YouTube and Google class room. Most of the students preferred recorded classes (69.2%) over live classes (33.5%). Submissions were mainly through the online platform itself (69.5%), email submission to the department (17%) or to the faculty (13.5%). Forty seven percent of the students wanted the classes to be of 30 to 45 minutes duration and 42% felt that the classes should be short and below 30 minutes. Only 28.3% of the students favored centralized online class by the university. Providing education to students cannot be discontinued for long. In the present study students are able to follow the online classes and have good learning experience on in the Didactic part. The medical educators could rise up to the challenge of continuing to teach even in times of crisis.

Keywords: COVID 19; Central Kerala; MBBS; Online classes; pedagogical shift.