VALIDITY OF ROBO-LAB IN SIMULATING NEUROSCIENCES CONCEPTS FOR UNDERGRADUATES IN FACULTY OF MEDICINE
In science education, inquiry-based approaches to teaching and learning provide a framework for students to building critical-thinking and problem-solving skills. Neurosciences are complicated subjects which are not easily comprehended through traditional teaching. It is essential for medical students to be familiar with it before exposure to clinical neuromedicine and neuro surgery in clinical phase. Accordingly, it was a challenge to find an innovative way for demonstrating concepts of neuroscience for medical students in their first year.
In view of difficulty of doing experiments on animals, simulation technology is widely used in undergraduate and graduate medical education. Simulation provides safe and effective opportunities for learners for better understanding. Nowadays, students are skilled in technology as they use web browsing, online games, and electronic games. That encouraged us to use (Robo-lab) produced by toys company to harness the attractiveness and ubiquity of electronic venues toward the goal of simulating neuroscience.
We introduced Robo-lab is used as a simulator tool for concepts of neuroscience in one day workshop. This paper reports validity of using Robo-lab in enhancing understanding concepts of neurosciences.
16 students involved in one day, hands-On workshop. The concepts of structure, function and different laws that determine the neuroscience can be simulated by programming (Robo-lab) and handled in an interactive way. An expert in teaching Robotics explained the exercises. After each experiment, the significance of each exercise was explained by the researcher to reflect the simulation to the physiological concept. To evaluate validity of this new method in clarifying the neuroscience concepts, a Pre and post test were run to determine students understanding for these concepts related to nervous system . Test was composed of 10 questions in true /false format and covering main concepts in neuroscience which handled in the workshop. Overall evaluation of workshop feed back covering administrative and technical issues in this workshop.
A significant improvement in students understanding is recognized in comparing pre-test and post-test results. Student-reported satisfaction about the effectiveness of Robo-lab in enhancing critical thinking in neurosciences. The overall mean of their is 3.6/4. They expressed that Interactive exercises during sessions clarified the complicated facts discussed in traditional teaching. They expressed simulating nervous system by robots stormed brains for applications in clinical neurosciences. Also feedback reflected that learning can be a pleasure!.
Simulation technology using Robo-lab is a powerful tool for the education of undergraduate medical students and physicians. Its educational effectiveness depends on informed use for trainees, including providing feedback, engaging learners in deliberate practice, integrating simulation into an overall curriculum enhance critical thinking and problem solving skills. Simulation and interactive methods make The learning process more innovative, interesting and brain storming. Robo-lab was also found a cost effective method that reduce economic burden in the academic institute.