Research indicates that graduating doctors believe they are deficient in the skills needed to become evidence-based practitioners. To address this the University of Wollongong’s new Graduate School of Medicine has embedded research and critical analysis (RCA) skills into the case-based curriculum. A key component of the RCA curriculum is improving the medical students’ critical appraisal skills by participating in Journal Club during their first phase of the course. Feedback from the first two student cohorts participating in Journal Club suggested that it was not important or interesting.
To increase the level of interest, enthusiasm and participation in Journal Club peer-assessment and an end-of-year reward through friendly competition between tutorial groups were added for the third cohort of students.