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We sought to develop a unique educational course for emergency medicine residents that provides the essential knowledge, the practical skills, and the motivation to complete a research project during the residency. A 5-day mandatory course was designed for first-year emergency medicine residents. Unique features of the curriculum include 1) didactic lectures paired with workshops teaching practical skills and 2) the use of a hypothetical research question (“mock project”) that is utilized for practical experience at each step and results in an oral presentation of the completed research project. The course was evaluated with pre- and post-tests of general research knowledge, quality of the final presentations, and a post-course questionnaire. Following completion of the course, the 16 emergency medicine resident participants showed significant improvement in research knowledge, as evidenced by higher median post-test scores and an absolute increase in the pass rate of 50%. Residents' final course presentations were given ratings of “above average” to “superior” by all observing faculty members. Finally, 87.5% of the residents felt that developing a mock project during the course (“handson” experience) increased their confidence and interest in conducting future academic research. Thus, an introductory course in research methodology that utilizes didactic lectures paired with appropriate practical workshops and incorporates completion of a mock research project may provide an effective method for teaching emergency medicine residents to conduct research.
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Accepted: January 5, 1996
Received in revised form: December 15, 1995
Received: August 16, 1995
© 1996 Published by Elsevier Inc.