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Online teaching in physiotherapy education during COVID-19 pandemic in Italy: a retrospective case-control study on students' satisfaction and performance.
BMC Med Educ. 2021 Aug 30; 21(1):456.BM

Abstract

BACKGROUND

During COVID-19 pandemic, physiotherapy lecturers faced the challenge of rapidly shifting from face-to-face to online education. This retrospective case-control study aims to compare students' satisfaction and performances shown in an online course to a control group of students who underwent the same course delivered face-to-face in the previous five years.

METHODS

Between March and April 2020, a class (n = 46) of entry-level physiotherapy students (University of Verona - Italy), trained by an experienced physiotherapist, had 24-hours online lessons. Students exposed to the same course in the previous five academic years (n = 112), delivered with face-to-face conventional lessons, served as a historical control. The course was organized in 3 sequential phases: (1) PowerPoint presentations were uploaded to the University online platform, (2) asynchronous video recorded lectures were provided on the same platform, and (3) between online lectures, the lecturer and students could communicate through an email chat to promote understanding, dispel any doubts and collect requests for supplementary material (e.g., scientific articles, videos, webinars, podcasts). Outcomes were: (1) satisfaction as routinely measured by University with a national instrument and populated in a database; (2) performance as measured with an oral examination.

RESULTS

We compared satisfaction with the course, expressed on a 5-point Likert scale, resulting in no differences between online and face-to-face teaching (Kruskal-Wallis 2 = 0.24, df = 1, p = 0.62). We weighted up students' results by comparing their mean performances with the mean performances of the same course delivered face-to-face in the previous five years, founding a statistical significance in favour of online teaching (Wilcoxon rank sum test W = 1665, p < 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS

Online teaching in entry-level Physiotherapy seems to be a feasible option to face COVID-19 pandemic, as satisfies students as well as face-to-face courses and leading to a similar performance. Entry-level Bachelors in Physiotherapy may consider moving to eLearning to facilitate access to higher education. Universities will have to train lecturers to help them develop appropriate pedagogical skills, and supply suitable support in terms of economic, organizational, and technological issues, aimed at guaranteeing a high level of education to their students.

TRIAL REGISTRATION

Retrospectively registered.

Authors+Show Affiliations

School of Physiotherapy, University of Verona, Verona, Italy.Physiotherapist, Private practitioner, Pistoia, Italy.Laboratory of Rehabilitation Technologies, San Camillo IRCCS srl, Venice, Italy.Department of Neuroscience, Rehabilitation, Ophthalmology, Genetics, Maternal and Child Health, University of Genoa, Campus of Savona, Savona, Italy.School of Physiotherapy, University of Verona, Verona, Italy.School of Physiotherapy, University of Verona, Verona, Italy.Clinical Epidemiology Unit, Orthopedics, Department of Clinical Sciences Lund, Lund University, Entrégatan 8 Lund 22100, Lund, Sweden. andrea.dellisola@med.lu.se. Department of Clinical Sciences Orthopaedics, Clinical Epidemiology Unit, Lund University, Lund, Sweden. andrea.dellisola@med.lu.se.Unit of Clinical Epidemiology, IRCCS Istituto Ortopedico Galeazzi, Milan, Italy.Department of Neuroscience, Rehabilitation, Ophthalmology, Genetics, Maternal and Child Health, University of Genoa, Campus of Savona, Savona, Italy. Sovrintendenza Sanitaria Regionale Puglia, Direzione Regionale Puglia INAIL, Bari, Italy.Department of Medical and Biological Sciences, University of Udine, Udine, Italy.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

34455979

Citation

Rossettini, Giacomo, et al. "Online Teaching in Physiotherapy Education During COVID-19 Pandemic in Italy: a Retrospective Case-control Study On Students' Satisfaction and Performance." BMC Medical Education, vol. 21, no. 1, 2021, p. 456.
Rossettini G, Geri T, Turolla A, et al. Online teaching in physiotherapy education during COVID-19 pandemic in Italy: a retrospective case-control study on students' satisfaction and performance. BMC Med Educ. 2021;21(1):456.
Rossettini, G., Geri, T., Turolla, A., Viceconti, A., Scumà, C., Mirandola, M., Dell'Isola, A., Gianola, S., Maselli, F., & Palese, A. (2021). Online teaching in physiotherapy education during COVID-19 pandemic in Italy: a retrospective case-control study on students' satisfaction and performance. BMC Medical Education, 21(1), 456. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12909-021-02896-1
Rossettini G, et al. Online Teaching in Physiotherapy Education During COVID-19 Pandemic in Italy: a Retrospective Case-control Study On Students' Satisfaction and Performance. BMC Med Educ. 2021 Aug 30;21(1):456. PubMed PMID: 34455979.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Online teaching in physiotherapy education during COVID-19 pandemic in Italy: a retrospective case-control study on students' satisfaction and performance. AU - Rossettini,Giacomo, AU - Geri,Tommaso, AU - Turolla,Andrea, AU - Viceconti,Antonello, AU - Scumà,Cristina, AU - Mirandola,Mattia, AU - Dell'Isola,Andrea, AU - Gianola,Silvia, AU - Maselli,Filippo, AU - Palese,Alvisa, Y1 - 2021/08/30/ PY - 2021/06/28/received PY - 2021/08/17/accepted PY - 2021/8/30/entrez PY - 2021/8/31/pubmed PY - 2021/9/1/medline KW - COVID-19 KW - Digital KW - Distance KW - E-learning KW - Education KW - Entry-level KW - Online KW - Physiotherapy KW - SARS-CoV-2. KW - Student SP - 456 EP - 456 JF - BMC medical education JO - BMC Med Educ VL - 21 IS - 1 N2 - BACKGROUND: During COVID-19 pandemic, physiotherapy lecturers faced the challenge of rapidly shifting from face-to-face to online education. This retrospective case-control study aims to compare students' satisfaction and performances shown in an online course to a control group of students who underwent the same course delivered face-to-face in the previous five years. METHODS: Between March and April 2020, a class (n = 46) of entry-level physiotherapy students (University of Verona - Italy), trained by an experienced physiotherapist, had 24-hours online lessons. Students exposed to the same course in the previous five academic years (n = 112), delivered with face-to-face conventional lessons, served as a historical control. The course was organized in 3 sequential phases: (1) PowerPoint presentations were uploaded to the University online platform, (2) asynchronous video recorded lectures were provided on the same platform, and (3) between online lectures, the lecturer and students could communicate through an email chat to promote understanding, dispel any doubts and collect requests for supplementary material (e.g., scientific articles, videos, webinars, podcasts). Outcomes were: (1) satisfaction as routinely measured by University with a national instrument and populated in a database; (2) performance as measured with an oral examination. RESULTS: We compared satisfaction with the course, expressed on a 5-point Likert scale, resulting in no differences between online and face-to-face teaching (Kruskal-Wallis 2 = 0.24, df = 1, p = 0.62). We weighted up students' results by comparing their mean performances with the mean performances of the same course delivered face-to-face in the previous five years, founding a statistical significance in favour of online teaching (Wilcoxon rank sum test W = 1665, p < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: Online teaching in entry-level Physiotherapy seems to be a feasible option to face COVID-19 pandemic, as satisfies students as well as face-to-face courses and leading to a similar performance. Entry-level Bachelors in Physiotherapy may consider moving to eLearning to facilitate access to higher education. Universities will have to train lecturers to help them develop appropriate pedagogical skills, and supply suitable support in terms of economic, organizational, and technological issues, aimed at guaranteeing a high level of education to their students. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Retrospectively registered. SN - 1472-6920 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/34455979/Online_teaching_in_physiotherapy_education_during_COVID_19_pandemic_in_Italy:_a_retrospective_case_control_study_on_students'_satisfaction_and_performance_ L2 - https://bmcmededuc.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12909-021-02896-1 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -