The educational process at higher medical school is a complex system, and everything new that is included in it makes structural and qualitative changes. Despite the fact that distance learning (DL) is a new educational practice, its first elements generated in medieval Europe – with the advent of regular and affordable postal communication, students received educational materials, corresponded with teachers, and passed exams or research papers.
Today, distance learning offers us wide opportunities and ensures the principle of continuity of education, as it allows us to reach a large audience without reference to a specific place and time. Since March 18, training for 1-5 courses of the specialty “General medicine” is carried out according to the timetable via chats in the WhatsApp messenger. Before the class, students study the proposed material, video lectures, lectures, and links to the necessary textbooks in blueprints in the KEYPS system and on the University’s YouTube channel. Additionally, there are video conferences on the ZOOM platform and surveys in Google Forms. These training methods allow students and teachers to freely communicate, analyze topics, situational tasks, conduct consultations and discussions in the “Question-answer” format.
The main principle of the DL at SMU is the mutual responsibility of all participants. The head of the group creates a chat, adds the rest of the students in the group, the teacher, the tutor, and the person responsible for monitoring. The group tutor monitors the online activity of the group and is responsible for the participation of the group’s students in DL. The staff of the academic department perform daily monitoring of classes and provide a weekly report in the prescribed form.
The main function of teaching staff in DL is not only to present educational material, but also to teach students to work with it, to coordinate their independent work in the virtual educational space. Students in DL system need to be able to focus on the most important and significant details, creatively rethink the learning process and the knowledge they acquire.
Thus, one of the current goals of SMU is the development and improvement of distance learning as a new approach to education.
School of Medicine