Educational Technology Infrastructure and Services in North American Medical Schools


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Abstract

PurposeTo describe the current educational technology infrastructure and services provided by North American allopathic medical schools that are members of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), to present information needed for institutional benchmarking.MethodA Web-based survey instrument was developed and administered in the fall of 2004 by the authors, sent to representatives of 137 medical schools and completed by representatives of 88, a response rate of 64%. Schools were given scores for infrastructure and services provided. Data were analyzed with one-way analyses of variance, chi-square, and correlation coefficients.ResultsThere was no difference in the number of infrastructure features or services offered based on region of the country, public versus private schools, or size of graduating class. Schools implemented 3.0 (SD = 1.5) of 6 infrastructure items and offered 11.6 (SD = 4.1) of 22 services. Over 90% of schools had wireless access (97%), used online course materials for undergraduate medical education (97%), course management system for graduate medical education (95%) and online teaching evaluations (90%). Use of services differed across the undergraduate, graduate, and continuing medical education continuum. Outside of e-portfolios for undergraduates, the least-offered services were for services to graduate and continuing medical education.ConclusionsThe results of this survey provide a benchmark for the level of services and infrastructure currently supporting educational technology by AAMC-member allopathic medical schools.

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