The “Teaching skills in West African medical and nursing schools” project aims to address these deficiencies and enhance the quality of undergraduate teaching in six of the university-based medical and nursing schools of West Africa.
Specifically, the project will develop and run a two year, part-time, modular MSc course to be based at the University of Ibadan in Nigeria. The course will provide a platform to enhance the teaching skills of academic staff of six medical schools in West Africa. The development of the course and aspects of its delivery will be undertaken in collaboration with two medical schools in the UK. The MSc course will incorporate a substantial educational project and three distance learning modules.
Designing teaching modules and projects
In the initial set of activities, the universities engaged in the project will jointly devise the structure and contents of the modular (taught) elements of the course. The taught elements of the MSc course will be contained in three modules. African universities have two semesters each year, and the three modules will be completed within three semesters of equal length.
The first module will include an introduction to the general principles of university education (curriculum design, course delivery, examinations and assessments, student welfare, etc.). The second module will focus on the best use of teaching methods in medical and nursing education in a West African context (small groups, laboratory teaching, clinical teaching, etc.). The third module will offer students a selection of possible optional courses including: teaching of preclinical science, clinical practice, public health medicine, pathology or nursing.
The project partners will then plan and develop distance learning material. This will help introduce MSc students to learning resources that they may not have had access to in their home institutions. The partners will also strive to provide traditionally taught medical and nursing courses to students in a well-structured and edited format through CD-ROMs.
Another important aspect of the project will be a range of teaching projects that will be undertaken by academic staff enrolled in the MSc course. They will carry out projects at their home medical schools aimed at introducing innovative changes in the school’s undergraduate medical education. The projects will be defined in collaboration with the deans of the six West African medical and nursing schools.