Utilization of Moderate-Duration Summary Podcasts Compared to Long-Duration Podcasts for Psychiatry Education by Canadian Preclerkship Medical Students

Dr. Joey Prisnie

Joey Prisnie is a PGY-4 psychiatry resident at the University of Calgary. In July 2021, he will be starting his Child & Adolescent subspecialty training also at the U of C. He has a special interest in medical education and early psychosis.

Learning Objectives:

1. Briefly review literature on podcast usage for medical education;

2. Discuss the rationale for creating new summary podcasts in the University of Calgary medical school curriculum; and

3. Review data on usage metrics for new summary podcasts compared to existing long duration podcasts.


Objective: The ideal length of podcasts for undergraduate medical education is unclear. Although many medical schools post fulllecture podcast recordings, there is increasing evidence that podcasts of shorter duration may be a more effective educational tool. Data on podcast utilization for psychiatry education in particular remains limited.

Methods: Resident-driven 5 to 15 minute moderate-duration audiovisual podcasts (“summary podcasts”) were created to supplement the existing full-lecture podcast recordings (“long podcasts”) during the University of Calgary medical school pre-clerkship psychiatry curriculum from November to December 2019. The authors compared traffic statistics including number of views and downloads of summary podcasts against long podcasts.

Results: A total of 6 lectures during the curriculum had both long podcasts and summary podcasts available to students. Overall, there was no statistically significant difference between the mean combined views and downloads of the summary podcasts compared to the long podcasts. When looking at views and downloads across the 22-day span of the curriculum, the long podcasts were predominantly accessed in the days following the lecture, with the summary podcasts being accessed more frequently in the days preceding the final examination.

Conclusions: This study suggests that both long podcasts and summary podcasts were accessed and utilized by students. The differing patterns of when each type of podcast was accessed may indicate a preference for the summary podcasts being used as review tools, rather than as a primary means of learning the material.

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