Publication Details

Rhodes, K. & Ashcroft, E. M. (2011). A spiral curriculum for teaching resuscitation: the what, the why, the how. What Why & How: 8th International Spark of Life Conference: Scientific Programme Abstracts & Information (pp. 50-50). Australian Resuscitation Council.


Background: More than fifty years ago, Jerome Bruner introduced the spiral curriculum based on constructivist ideas. Most fields of education adopted this concept which promises to enable the learner to develop their ability to transfer thinking processes from one context to another - also an essential skill for a medical doctor. Aim: By implementing the spiral curriculum model throughout our course, we aim to not only accelerate our students' learning, we also seek to better prepare them to master situations that arise infrequently or urgently, such as the need for life support skills. Method: Based on the our MBBS entry requirement "Possession of a First Aid Certificate ", our clinical skills teaching revisits "Basic Life Support (BLS)" on several occasions throughout the four year degree, building cumulatively on already learnt content. We guide the students to acquire new psychomotor skills at the same time as applying already learnt concepts and facilitating their ongoing learning through inquiry. Equipped with these skills students participate then in our graded submersive, high-fidelity manikin-based simulation program with a focus on BLS and Advanced Life Support (ALS) scenarios. Results: Evaluation comments such as; "CPR is vital for medical training" , "Great revision of BLS, Automated External Defibrillation (AED) and bagging" or "An excellent activity, reinforced lots of physiology and pharmacology while also refreshing BLS/ALS" demonstrate the acceptance of the spiral teaching approach by the students and validates the effort and dedication of our staff.

Link to publisher version (URL)

International Spark of Life Conference