Small Group Discussion Vs Didactic Lectures


  • Mohammad Rashad Qamar Quaid-e-Azam Medical College Bahawalpur
  • Amina Ahmad College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan (CPSP)
  • Khurram Niaz Quaid-e-Azam Medical College Bahawalpur


Academic performance, Didactic lecturing, Learning, Small group discussion


Objective: To study and compare the impact of didactic lecturing with small group discussion among undergraduate medical students.

Study Design: Sequential mixed method.

Place and Duration of Study: Quaid-e-Azam Medical College, Bahawalpur, from January 2012 to October 2012.

Material and Methods: Results of 2 final year classes comprising 566 students (of sessions 2011 and 2012) were analyzed and 30 students from the existing final year were selected for focus group discussion by non-probability convenience sampling technique. In the first phase, quasi experimental design was employed. Small group discussion(SGD)learning format was used as an intervention on the interventional group(277 students)and results were compared with the scores of previous final year student(historical control group: 289 students) who learnt through didactic lecturing. In the second phase, focus group discussions of current final year was arranged to dig out their views about SGD intervention. The quantitative data was analyzed by using SPSS version 17. Content analysis method was applied for qualitative analysis of focus group discussions.

Results: The mean scores were 1006±60 in interventional group as compared to 1026 ± 57 in non-interventional group (p<0.001). In second phase, the focus group discussion, students (30), found lecturing was a better way of learning than SGD in terms of content coverage according to 15 students (62.5%), senior people teaching: 9(37.5%), who were better prepared: 6(25%). Whereas, the downside of small group discussion was related to the fact that the junior teachers were involved in teaching according to 15 (62.5%) who were less prepared: 11 (45.8%) and lack of uniformity in practicing the intervention in different wards: 10 (41.7%).

Conclusion: Students consider SGD as a relatively less favored mode of information transfer owing to multiple factors influencing the learning process of students as opposed to didactic lecturing in our set-up.


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How to Cite

Qamar MR, Ahmad A, Niaz K. LEARNING THROUGH SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION VERSUS DIDACTIC LECTURES: Small Group Discussion Vs Didactic Lectures. Pak Armed Forces Med J [Internet]. 2015 Jun. 30 [cited 2024 May 20];65(3):386-90. Available from: https://www.pafmj.org/PAFMJ/article/view/925



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