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The struggle to understand: Exploring medical students’ experiences of learning and understanding during a university course
Karolinska Institutet.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3027-514X
Stockholms universitet.
Karolinska Institutet.
Karolinska Institutet.
2016 (English)In: Studies in Higher Education, ISSN 0307-5079, E-ISSN 1470-174X, Vol. 41, no 3, p. 462-477Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of the research reported in this paper was to explore students' ‘journey’ towards conceptual understanding during an undergraduate course. The task that medical students face – to learn a substantial quantity of detailed knowledge and integrate into a coherent whole in a limited time frame – is demanding. Seven students were interviewed in a group, and 17 students gave their reflections in writing. Data was gathered from both groups on five separate occasions. The findings suggest that students seek different kinds of understandings as they get to grips with their studies. The forms of understanding were: understanding as ‘knowing the language’, ‘knowing the map’, ‘knowing the catalogue’ and ‘experiencing an integrated whole’. Students first appeared to focus on the first two forms, and later in the course, as they learned more, they focused on the ‘catalogue’ or the ‘integrated whole’. The findings point to potential pathways students might take towards gaining deeper understanding.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2016. Vol. 41, no 3, p. 462-477
Keyword [en]
Deep Learning, Course Experience, Forms of Understanding, Approach to Learning, Medical Education
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Education and Communication in the Technological Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-174887DOI: 10.1080/03075079.2014.930122ISI: 000366678300005Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84903354853OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-174887DiVA, id: diva2:859708
Note

QC 20160220

Available from: 2015-10-08 Created: 2015-10-08 Last updated: 2018-01-15Bibliographically approved

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Weurlander, Maria

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