Each medical school in the UK has its own way of teaching its students and helping them build the skills they need. Which one best matches your personal learning style will vary and there are pros and cons to each option. Picking out the right one for you can help you achieve your full potential while studying and develop your career. In the UK, courses on offer typically use one of these five approaches to training
- Traditional teaching style
Traditional courses are lecture based and each subject is taught separately. For two years you’ll undertake pre-clinical, which looks at basic medical sciences, followed by a clinical course that typically last for three years, where you work in hospital wards as well as attending lectures. This teaching style suits those that work well in lecture setting but for those that prefer to take a hands-on approach, it might not be the right teaching style.
- Integrated teaching style
While traditional courses separate each subject, the integrated teaching style blends them into systems, aiming to give a more holistic, seamless approach. Lectures still play an important role but this will be complemented by tutorials and self-directed learning. When compared to the traditional teaching style, you’ll also tend to work with patients earlier on within your course development.
- PBL teaching style
If you prefer to take a hands-on approach to learning, a PBL, problem based learning, course might be right for you. You’ll be expected to work with and see patient right from the beginning of your course. You’ll be given medical cases to work on and resolve, both individually and as part of a group. Most courses don’t take a pure PBL approach, instead blending it with other teaching styles to include lectures and seminars.
- CBL teaching style
Case based learning (CBL) is similar to PBL, in that it takes an integrated approach. You’ll work in small groups to focus on cases, developing the skills and knowledge needed for each case. It combines lectures, clinical skills, seminars, individual study, and other approaches to learning medicine for a diverse range of opportunities.
- EBL teaching style
An enquiry based learning (EBL) teaching style is ideal for those that want to take control of their own learning. As the student, you’ll be in charge of leading the areas that you want to study, with the support of a teacher. It includes problem based learning style too.