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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 46  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 159-160

Students' perspective and feedback on foundation course 2019 in a medical college of North India

1 Department of Community Medicine, Medical Education Unit, Subharti Medical College, Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India
2 Department of Pharmacology, Medical Education Unit, Subharti Medical College, Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India

Date of Submission02-Mar-2020
Date of Acceptance20-Sep-2027
Date of Web Publication1-Mar-2021

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Saurabh Sharma
Department of Community Medicine, Medical Education Unit, Subharti Medical College, Haridwar Byepass Road, Meerut - 250 005, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijcm.IJCM_126_20

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How to cite this article:
Sharma S, Gupta S, Bansal R. Students' perspective and feedback on foundation course 2019 in a medical college of North India. Indian J Community Med 2021;46:159-60

How to cite this URL:
Sharma S, Gupta S, Bansal R. Students' perspective and feedback on foundation course 2019 in a medical college of North India. Indian J Community Med [serial online] 2021 [cited 2022 May 21];46:159-60. Available from: https://www.ijcm.org.in/text.asp?2021/46/1/159/310444


In 2019, the Medical Council of India (MCI) has proposed a dedicated 1-month exclusive “foundation course” at the onset of the MBBS course. The purpose of the foundation course includes[1] orienting the students to the medical college environment; equipping them with skills required for patient care; enhancing their communication, language, learning, and computer skills; and providing an opportunity for peer and faculty interactions and an overall sensitization to the various learning methodologies.

Foundation course was conducted for the MBBS batch of a medical college of North India in 2019. The duration of the foundation course was 30 days from August 1, 2019, to August 30, 2019. The 1-month timetable was made according to guidelines shared by the MCI. According to guidelines shared by MCI, major contents of the foundation course include orientation, skills module,enhancement of language/computer skills, professional development including ethics, sports and extracurricular activities. All the sessions were taken by an experienced faculty of medical college, engineering college, yoga college, college of education, and college of physical education of university under the guidance of the medical education unit of medical college. A feedback was taken from students after 30 days of completion of the foundation course.

According to 76.9% of students, the introduction part reduced anxiety and fear. Few friendly interactions with senior faculties gave them a sense of security in a new environment far away from home. The relevance of various topics included in the foundation course as perceived by students is shown in [Table 1]. Almost all the students said they learned that apart from providing treatment, the role of a doctor includes being a role model, inspirational figure, influencer, counselor, teacher, guide, researcher, and a person who have empathy for every stratum of society, despite their social, economic, and religious differences. According to many, the history of medicine helped them to learn about great scientists and doctors who dedicated their lives to this profession and their discoveries are boon for humanity. Students mentioned the roles of the Indian Medical Graduate to be a good communicator focusing on the doctor–patient relationship, creating awareness in society, helping community and government in times of disasters and epidemics, and doing ethical medical practice with empathy and loyalty.
Table 1: Orientation and skill module and professional development ethics module (P and E) and others (n=97)

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Discussion about the various career options in medicine was fancied by all the students, and many said that they were not aware of the options such as the World Health Organization and Doctors Without Borders. Many students liked the option of being a scientist and wanted to discover the cure for many incurable diseases. All students agreed that a family physician is the most approachable doctor for treatment and prevention of any disease as he knows the socioeconomic, cultural, and psychosocial environment of family. According to students, a doctor can contribute to national interest by following the National Health Policies and thus may help the country to reach its health goals.

On professional development ethics and other topics, almost 60% of students felt that at least one or more times in their life they felt that the doctor who was treating their family members did not interact with them as they were expected. After the discussion in class, they expressed that in their professional life, they will always be focused on appropriate communication with patients and their families. Maximum students liked the image of a doctor as a well-groomed and formally dressed person with a white coat. All agreed that the medical profession demands few sacrifices from them. Yoga, hobbies, music, and interpersonal relationships were perceived as good tools for stress management while drugs were disapproved by all the students as a resort to manage stress.

In language training, they mainly learned not to use medical jargon while having conversations with patients, and awareness of vernacular language creates better understanding and makes the patient feel better. Most students mentioned that the coming age is of artificial intelligence, so knowledge of computers is necessary. Few found computer skill sessions irrelevant as they already knew about it. Maximum students were in favor of sports. Some said that it is very significant to keep our passion for sports to combat stress in studies and to be healthy. Few students wanted to Excel in sports too and play national and international tournaments. Some of them thought that there is no need for a doctor to learn sports. Yoga sessions were found good by a significant number of students, but few found it boring. Many said that they have heard that many celebrities and sports professionals regularly practice yoga and they felt very lucky to learn about yoga and would practice it in the future.

No one of them was aware of the concept of holistic health earlier, and they said that few of their family members who are suffering from chronic diseases and elderly citizens can get maximum advantage from this. Many mentioned that they will practice it in their professional life. Many found spirituality necessary to build a strong character by which a student and a doctor can handle many adversities in life and grow. According to some, if a doctor is spiritual, his patients will learn this art from him and can recover fast.

The biggest feedback came in the form of a lack of interaction with senior undergraduates. Sixty-one percent of students felt that they never had an opportunity to interact with their seniors. They felt in many situations that both the groups were open and interested to interact, but there existed a huge communication gap between them. Six percent of students responded on the duration of course (1 month) to be very long and thought that the same content could be delivered in the smaller duration of time. 31.2% found the back-to-back lectures very tough to handle. Twenty-nine percent recommended sports sessions daily in the morning with more time allotted to it to make it a habit among students.

38.8% of students found topics either repetitive or had matter which was already known to them. Interactive sessions such as role-plays and videos were appreciated while PowerPoint presentations were disliked by students. Fifty-one percent felt that yoga and spirituality sessions should not be limited to the foundation course and must continue with regular studies. Findings, similar to our feedback, were published in an article where 40.5% of students felt that the sessions such as basic life support and cardiopulmonary resuscitation training were the most interesting. 61.4% and 35.8% of students felt that computer skills and language were the least important topics, respectively, while 49.3% of students believed that 1 month was a long duration, and it should be less.[2] In a study, it was found that components of foundation course such as stress management, extracurricular activities, yoga, and spirituality were helpful for students in coping with depression, anxiety, and stress, respectively.[3] Foundation course also addresses the reformation in social relations and expanding the leisure time of medical students which was published in an article.[4]

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Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

   References Top

Medical Council of India: Foundation Course for the Undergraduate Medical Education Program; 2019. Available from: https://www.mciindia.org/CMS/wp content/uploads/2019/08/foundation-new_compressed.pdf. [Last accessed on 2017 Aug 17].  Back to cited text no. 1
Khilani AK, Patel J, Khilnani G. Students' feedback on the foundation course in competency based medical education curriculum. Int J Res Med Sci 2019;7:4408-9.  Back to cited text no. 2
Taneja N, Sachdeva S, Dwivedi N. Assessment of Depression, Anxiety, and Stress among Medical Students Enrolled in a Medical College of New Delhi, India. Indian J Soc Psychiatry 2018;34:157-62.  Back to cited text no. 3
  [Full text]  
Sachdeva S, Dwivedi N. Medical Students' Opinion and Perception of the Education Environment in a Medical College of Delhi, India. MAMC J Med Sci 2018;4:18-25.  Back to cited text no. 4
  [Full text]  


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