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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 163-168

Medical students' perceptions of their educational environment at a Saudi university


Department of Dermatology, College of Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sahar Hassan Al-Natour
Department of Dermatology, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, King Fahd Hospital of the University, P. O. Box 2208, Al-Khobar 31952
Saudi Arabia
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DOI: 10.4103/sjmms.sjmms_141_17

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Background: Students' perception of their educational environment has a significant impact on their behavior and academic progress. Aim: The aim of the study is to assess the perceptions of undergraduate medical students regarding their educational environment at Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Saudi Arabia. Subjects and Methods: This cross-sectional study utilized the Dundee Ready Education Environment Measure (DREEM) inventory to collect data from 5th-year medical students at Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University during the academic year 2010–2011 (score range: 0–200). The mean scores for each individual item and for the following five contributing DREEM domains were calculated: Perception of learning, perception of teaching, academic self-perception, perception of atmosphere and social self-perception. Results: The questionnaire was distributed to 121 students, all of whom completed the questionnaire. Of these, 65.3% were male and 34.7% were female. The mean total score was 126.4 (63%), indicating that the educational environment is satisfactory. The two lowest scoring contributory domains were academic self-perception (17.4/28; 60%) and perception of learning (29.3/48; 61%). No areas of excellence were identified (i.e., mean scores of >3.5); however, four main problematic areas were identified (mean scores of ≤2.0): Overemphasis of factual learning (1.66), difficulty with authoritarianism of teachers (1.55), students unable to memorize everything (1.82) and boredom in course (1.81). Conclusion: This study found that the overall educational environment at Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University is satisfactory, with further scope of improvement. The author recommends implementation of remedial measures such as modifications in curriculum and using innovative teaching strategies to overcome problematic areas and further improve the overall educational environment.


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