Personal experience narratives by students: a teaching–learning tool in bioethics
The principles of bioethics have been identified as important requirements for training basic medical doctors. Till now, various modalities have been used for teaching bioethics, such as lectures, followed by a small case-based discussion, case vignettes or debates among students. For effective teaching–learning of bioethics, it is necessary to integrate theory and practice rather than merely teach theoretical constructs without helping the students translate those constructs into practice. Classroom teaching can focus on the theoretical knowledge of professional relationships, patient–doctor relationships, issues at the beginning and end of life, reproductive technologies, etc. However, a better learning environment can be created through an experiencebased approach to complement lectures and facilitate successful teaching. Engaging students in reflective dialogue with their peers would allow them to refine their ideas with respect to learning ethics. It can help in the development both of the cognitive and affective domains of the teaching of bioethics. Real-life narratives by the interns, when used as case or situation analysis models for a particular ethical issue, can enhance other students’ insight and give them a moral boost. Doing this can change the classroom atmosphere, enhance motivation, improve the students’ aptitude and improve their attitude towards learning bioethics. Involving the students in this manner can prove to be a sustainable way of achieving the goal of deep reflective learning of bioethics and can serve as a new technique for maintaining the interest of students as well as teachers.
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