Avoid non-structured oral exams, and don’t use only cognitive tools of technical knowledge in the assessment of practical skills.


Topic Area

Medical Education

Despite the availability of a large literature on its unreliability, non-structured oral exams are still widely used in Italian courses, often as the only time of personal interaction with the teacher, even for assessment of practical skills, for which, any cognitive test would be insufficient. This apply to a great part of the activities of Continuous Medical Education, which mostly claim to pursue practical aims, but are evaluated at best with “checking boxes” tests (often cheating), and even more to many clinical clerkships and “professionalizing activities” in graduate courses, especially of Medicine, which often aren’t evaluated at all. Several valid alternatives exist, especially for practical tasks.


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Attention. Please note that these items are provided only for information and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a clinician. Patients with any specific questions about the items on this list or their individual situation should consult their clinician.