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DESIGNING PRACTICAL PBL LESSONS FOR FEMALE REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM PHYSIOPATHOLOGY TEACHING

The link between theoretical and practical curriculum in Pharmacy degree is crucial in generating graduates capable of applying basic science principles to solve therapeutic problems. The use of traditional teaching strategies such as formal lectures or laboratory exercises allows students to consolidate theoretical knowledge. The European Higher Education Area guidelines point out to develop the critical capacity, self-learning, and approach the student to the professional reality, fundamental skills. Problem-based learning (PBL) is an excellent tool for the development of analytical and organization capacities, decisions, task planning and problems. In pharmaceutical sciences, use of PBL methods has been reported to be adequate to higher-level classes, such as Physiopathology. The basis of PBL lies in the authenticity or real-life application of the learning. The real problem stimulates students’ interest and motivation to expand both major knowledge and skills. The inclusion of case-scenarios for classroom discussion or laboratory sessions seems to be more effective at helping student to learn pathological concepts compared with more traditional laboratory learning. In addition, computer based learning facilitates the resolution of case in the laboratory teaching practice and enable students to learn at their own pace, revisit exercises, and at a time and location to suit themselves. For all this, we propose the design of a novel integrated mixed methodology by combination of the PBL with the laboratory practices and the virtual simulation. The progressive resolution of a clinical case related to the ovarian dysfunction in a simulated environment by performing clinical diagnosis from patients’ biological samples will be the basis of learning.

So, students will be able to solve the problem posed thorough the following curricular objectives:
1) Identification of the phases of the ovarian cycle by histopathological analysis with optic microscopy, students will be able to know and understand the ovarian structure, function and its alterations;
2) vaginal cytological diagnosis from patients with ovarian dysfunction posed in the problem case;
3) effects of the administration of estrogen or calcitonin as hormone replacement therapy to ovariectomized rats by using simulation PhysioEX 9.0 software, students will be able to evaluate the hormonal therapeutic effects and its consequences on health and disease and its pharmacological application.

We will expect that this integrated pedagogic methodology allows to student to learn to solve professional reality problems linking theory with laboratory exercises; increasing content learning, skill development, and information collection; improving working with the equipment and analyzing results; as well as enhancing critical thinking and students’ overall understanding pathophysiological concepts. Fundamental to this method will be to expose students simultaneously to clinical and morphological data from posed case. The design of this novel teaching tool with an academic-professional profile will stimulate the capacity for integrated learning and the acquisition of fundamental transversal skills for the training of students of the degree in Pharmacy.

Acknowledgment:
This work is supported by PIMCD 159. Complutense University of Madrid. Spain