Author: Rezaee M, Moldovan T and Dereski M Publication Year: 2015
Summary: Millennial medical students are described as multi-taskers and social media buffs. These qualities often manifest themselves as student disengagement in the classroom. This study explores whether generational differences exist in the perceived effectiveness of various instructional strategies.
Description: Introduction: The ability to engage and capture the complete attention of first and second year medical students throughout a complete lecture may be a myth of the past. Unlike the generations before them, Millennial medical students have been described as multi-taskers, technology gurus, and social media buffs. These qualities often manifest themselves as student disengagement in the classroom. The purpose of this study was to determine whether generational differences exist in the perceived effectiveness of various instructional strategies in improving student engagement in the classroom.
Methods: Complimentary, web-based surveys were distributed to first and second year medical students and biomedical science faculty at Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine, as well as pre-medical students at Oakland University.
Results: Responses were obtained from 80 medical students (46%), 17 faculty members (50%) and 50 pre-medical students (6%). Out of 147 respondents, 73.4% were Millennials, 12.9% were Z’s, 7.5% were X’ers, and 6.1% were Baby Boomers. Significant differences were found in the perceived effectiveness of select instructional strategies between generations.
Conclusion: Identifying where generational perceptions of instructional strategy effectiveness intersect may allow educators to identify, enhance and invest in those strategies that have the greatest potential for success in the classroom.

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