ASME Scientific Meeting: July 2011, Edinburgh

Written By Philip Xiu

Jacky and I arrived to sunny Edinburgh to go to the ASME (Association for the study of Medical Education) and spent 3 days in the lovely city.

We presented our work on, with a focus on how we managed to develop the website from the videos, to the updated MCQs and the running of the website itself. The audience was very interested on how we managed to keep the actual costs of the website to a minimum, whilst developing such a comprehensive resource in such a short space of time (less than 4 months part time whilst juggling medical finals).

We feel that our methodology of building websites and incorporating innovative resources are not just limited to Medical Ethics and Law, and can be integrated into many other medical topics.

We garnered some excellent interest in the website, and we do hope that there will be fruitful collaborations in the future to come. We would love to hear from you, whether you were in ASME, whether you want to collaborate on any projects that you have in the same vein as, or just pop in to have a chat. We're very friendly :

Phil: & Jacky:

PS: There were a few questions that was asked, that we wish we could expand upon if we had the time, so here are the complete answers:

Q) If I gave you a script, how long would it take to make a medical ethics case video?
A) Knowing what we know now, it would take less than half a day to record all the voices, make the animations and upload onto the website, if the script and the notes are accurate. In fact, when we were making the website originally, we recorded and animated 8 videos in 1 day, and went to Pizza Hut for a meal (still students after all!).

Q) How long did it take you to make the website?
A) We spent somewhere in the region of 4 months part time making the website. In fact, we had to have a long 2 month hiatus in the middle (minor inconvenience of sitting our medical finals!). We managed to program the MCQ database which would record the user's MCQ results, in less than 1 week. We pride ourselves on been innovative and been fast and efficient at what we do.

Q) What are your plans for the future?
A) The ASME conference gave me and Jacky some time together to brainstorm some more potential ideas to develop the website further. We are constantly updating our website with new notes and trialling out new ideas. Keep your eyes peeled, for more exciting developments and features!

Q) Has this been incorporated into any medical schools' curriculum currently.
A) Not at present. One of the main reasons why we updated the MCQ database so that users are linked to it, and users can track and see how well they are doing across all topics, is that so other medical schools can recommend the website to their students, and student can go ahead and self-assess their progress. We are more than happy to provide bespoke MCQs/learning modules to meet any particular medical schools' needs if they wished for free (even starting up a new website on a different topic!)! We are very keen on teaching. Please do contact us!

Q) Have you advertised this at all?
A) No. Well, I suppose being at ASME and presenting it does count as advertising it. One of the reasons why we haven't yet is because we wanted to make sure that the website encompasses our vision of what medical ethics and law website should be before unleashing it. We have won many prizes for our website (The Mark Brennan prize from Institute of Medical Ethics Prize for Innovation in Teaching and Learning, and the onExamination from BMJ Learning Best online e-learning resource 2011, and many more!) and now we feel that the time has come to fully unveil it. With this in mind, we will be contacting students throughout the country (as well as heads of medical ethics departments, to publicise this).

As it is, we are getting around 500 hits/week from Google searches. And as time progresses, I am sure we will achieve much more.

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