Carriero, Alessandro and Bonomo, Lorenzo and Calliada, Fabrizio and Campioni, Paolo and Colosimo, Chiara and Cotroneo, Antonio and Cova, Maria Assunta and Ettorre, Giovanni Carlo and Fugazzola, Carlo and Garlaschi, Giacomo and Macarini, Luca and Mascalchi, Mario and Meloni, Giovanni Battista and Midiri, Massimo and Pozzi Mucelli, Roberto and Rossi, Cristina and Sironi, Sandro and Torricelli, Pietro and Beomonte Zobel, Bruno and Zompatori, Maurizio and Zuiani, Chiara (2012) E-learning in radiology: an Italian multicentre experience. European Journal of Radiology, Vol. 81 (12), p. 3936-3941. eISSN 1872-7727. Article.
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The aim of this study was to design, deliver and evaluate an e-learning teaching programme for post-graduate radiodiagnostics training that would involve various post-graduate schools throughout Italy.
Materials and methods
All of the Directors of Italian post-graduate schools of radiodiagnostics were sent an e-mail on 27 September 2010 informing them of our willingness to set up an e-learning project for the academic year 2010–2011 in the form of single-subject teaching seminars. The proposed subjects were the semeiotics of the various organs and apparatuses in the context of “Urgent/Emergency Pathology”. After having received registrations, a calendar of lessons was planned to be held between 10 November 2010 and 12 October 2011.
The validity of the project was tested by means of a multiple-choice questionnaire covering the technical and didactic quality of the entire project, to be completed by the students.
Fifty-one percent of the universities in Italy participated in the project: Trieste, Udine, Verona, Milan-Bicocca, Novara, Varese, Genoa, Sassari, Rome Campus, the Catholic University of Rome, Chieti, Foggia, Catania, Modena, Florence, Palermo, Bologna, Pavia, Parma and Ferrara. The lessons were attended by a total of 10,261 post-graduate medical students, for an average of 513.1 students per lesson.
Seventy percent of the students judged the didactic content “excellent”, 25% “good”, and 5% “satisfactory”; none said it was unsatisfactory. In terms of visual quality (particularly the details of the radiological images proposed in the form of slides and/or video clips), 73% judged it “excellent”, 20% “good”, 6% “satisfactory”, and 1% “poor”. The audio quality was judged “excellent” by 71%, “good” by 22%, “satisfactory” by 6% and “poor” by 1%. In relation to judgement of audio and video quality, it has to be underlined that this was greatly affected by the hardware/software configuration and the band speed and technology of the Internet connection.
Technological evolution is overcoming all barriers, and technology is also having a positive impact on the approach to teaching. Our multicentre teaching experience merits the following considerations: the quality of the teaching product was certified by the students’ judgements of its didactic content and the quality of reception; the economic cost of the teaching had a minimal impact on the post-graduate schools (€ 18 per lesson). In terms of breaking down national barriers, it is to be hoped that the coordination and integration of diagnostic imaging e-learning projects, with the participation of post-graduate schools in different European countries, can be developed not only in a spirit of “cultural sharing” and the exchange of teaching experiences.
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