Evidence-Based Medicine Curriculum Improves Pediatric Emergency Fellows' Scores on In-Training Examinations

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Abstract

Objectives

The aim of this study was to determine if implementation of our evidence-based medicine (EBM) curriculum had an effect on pediatric emergency medicine fellows' scores on the relevant section of the in-training examination (ITE).

Methods

We obtained deidentified subscores for 22 fellows over 6 academic years for the Core Knowledge in Scholarly Activities (SA) and, as a balance measure, Emergencies Treated Medically sections. We divided the subscores into the following 3 instruction periods: “baseline” for academic years before our current EBM curriculum, “transition” for academic years with use of a research method curriculum with some overlapping EBM content, and “EBM” for academic years with our current EBM curriculum. We analyzed data using the Kruskal-Wallis test, the Mann-Whitney U test, and multivariate mixed-effects linear models.

Results

The SA subscore median was higher during the EBM period in comparison with the baseline and transition periods. In contrast, the Emergencies Treated Medically subscore median was similar across instruction periods. Multivariate modeling demonstrated that our EBM curriculum had the following independent effects on the fellows' SA subscore: (1) in comparison with the transition period, the fellows' SA subscore was 21 percentage points higher (P = 0.005); and (2) in comparison to the baseline period, the fellows' SA subscore was 28 percentage points higher during the EBM curriculum instruction period (P < 0.001).

Conclusions

Our EBM curriculum was associated with significantly higher scores on the SA section of the ITE. Pediatric emergency medicine educators could consider using fellows' scores on this section of the ITE to assess the effect of their EBM curricula.

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