Use of an interactive online teaching module improved students' ability to write a clinically appropriate SOAP note

Elizabeth E. Alvarez, Jennifer M. Reinhart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The veterinary problem-based medical records lesson (Subjective-Objective-Assessment-Plan [SOAP] notes) at the University of Wisconsin, previously taught in lecture format, provides students little time for reflection. Moreover, evaluation of student-written SOAPs from subsequent courses demonstrates poor knowledge retention and application of the SOAP note structure.This article hypothesized that a virtual, interactive, case-based module would improve student SOAP-writing skills. A second-year student cohort (n = 79) was taught SOAP skills in lecture format (LECTURE-2); 2 years later, another second-year student cohort (n = 73) used the virtual module (MODULE-2). All students wrote SOAPs, which were evaluated using a standardized rubric and the cohorts' scores were compared. SOAPs were then compared between a third-year student cohort who received lecture-based SOAP instruction the year before (LECTURE-3, n = 55) and a third-year student cohort who received the virtual module (MODULE-3, n = 44). SOAP scores were significantly higher in the MODULE-2 group (Mdn = 6.5, range = 1.5-9.0) than in the LECTURE-2 group (Mdn = 5.0, range = 2.0-9.0, p =.006). Similarly, the MODULE-3 students scored higher on the differential diagnosis SOAP component than the LECTURE-3 students (Mdn = 1, range = 0-2, vs. Mdn = 0.5, range = 0-2, p =.041). Student feedback on the online module was positive.An online teaching module improved students' short- and long-term ability to write clinically appropriate SOAP notes.The findings suggest the module encouraged student engagement and reflection, leading to long-term retention and skill application.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)700-708
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Veterinary Medical Education
Volume47
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2020

Keywords

  • Interactive learning
  • Online learning
  • SOAPs
  • Student-centered

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • veterinary(all)

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