How do Family Physicians Use E-Learning?

DOI: 10.3238/zfa.2020.0502-0507

german translation / full article

Jennifer Engler, Corina Güthlin, Laura Bertram, Stefanie Joos, Jan Valentini

Keywords: complementary medicine continuing medical education family physicians process assessment web-based interventions

BackgroundWeb-based tools allow for a time- and cost-effective integration of continuing medical education (CME) into daily working routines. Different from evaluations of effectiveness only few process evaluations exist that address family physcians´ (FPs) actual use of e-learning programmes. In a research project, we developed and evaluated a blended-learning training that entailed a face-to-face workshop and an e-learning component. Based on log file and survey data this paper aims to describe how FPs used an e-learning programme on communication with cancer patients about complementary medicine and how they evaluated the programme. MethodsActivities of 28 FPs on the e-learning platform were tracked and log file data were analyzed with regard to the completion of lessons and duration of usage. Fifteen FPs filled in a survey on places and times of usage as well as their satisfaction with the e-learning provided. Data were analyzed descriptively. Results43 % (n = 12) of FPs completed the provided e-learning. Most FPs completed the e-learning in one to two months, whereas the median first course completion was two months after account activation. FPs were satisfied with structure, themes, educational materials and presentation formats. Most FPs used e-learning resources at the weekend or after hours at their private computers at home. Only one FP used the practice computer.ConclusionsE-Learning programmes for FPs do not reach all potential users. A mix of formats such as videos, voice-over powerpoint and texts as well as a clear course structure enhance usability. A clear time limit might be useful as well. FPs in our sample mostly used the e-learning from home. This should be considered when integrating tools that are to be used during practice-hours. Keywordsweb-based interventions; family physicians; process assessment; continuing medical education; complementary medicine

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