Veterinary medical students need multiple thinking strategies, particularly critical thinking.We used a multimedia, peer review learning management system (CGScholar) to introduce a series of complex, realistic, case-based e-learning modules to help introduce critical thinking to 422 first-year veterinary students through instructor-designed clinical cases. Students developed and published on the CGScholar platform an analysis of a case and conducted anonymous peer reviews of each other's drafts. Instructors selected desirable characteristics of a student's activity to track and provide automatic feedback to students via an analytics dashboard and aster plot that allowed visualization of progress.The dashboard also enabled instructors to view the entire class's performance, highlighting students whose performance was lagging. Online interactions were supplemented by case-specific face-to-face workshop sessions. Our goal was to address the following questions: Does the addition of multimedia to a work (one's own or others') enhance people's ability to understand and convey the material? Does peer review (of one's own and others' work) lead to improvements in the writer's own work? Does the peer review process enhance the writer's understanding of what constitutes high-quality literature evidence? An anonymous student survey showed that experience was significantly more positive in the second and third year of implementation after inclusion of explicit guidance on the use of the rubric for peer review. Overall, 67% of students thought inclusion of multimedia enhanced their ability to communicate and 52% agreed multimedia enhanced their ability to understand their peers' analyses, but students were split on benefits to their understanding of high-quality literature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-180
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Veterinary Medical Education
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2021


  • CGScholar
  • Case-based veterinary exercises
  • Cognitive teaching tools
  • Critical clinical thinking
  • Critical reasoning
  • Higher order thinking
  • Problem based learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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