Competency based medical education (CBME) requires novel approaches to surgical education. Significant investment has been made in laparoscopic simulation, which has been shown to foster skill development prior to patient encounters. However, research suggests variable voluntary use of these resources by residents, and little is known about the motivational factors that influence their utilization. The purpose of this study was to characterize factors that motivate residents to seek laparoscopic simulation experience outside of the formal curriculum.
We developed a questionnaire grounded in Expectancy Value Theory, an established psychological theory of motivation, by adapting validated measures to fit the study context. We conducted a cross sectional survey of Canadian obstetrics and gynecology residents.
We invited residents enrolled in English-language obstetrics and gynecology training programs in Canada to participate.
All residents engaged in clinical duties during Winter 2018 were invited to complete the questionnaire. Forty-four Obstetrics and Gynecology (Ob/Gyn) residents participated in the study.
Residents reported limited use of simulation resources and identified multiple barriers including lack of time, access, and supervision. They expressed concern about development of bad habits during independent practice, and simulation use was positively correlated with perceived utility. Compared to junior residents, senior residents reported greater enjoyment of laparoscopic surgery, less emotional costs, and higher self-efficacy for learning laparoscopy.
Residents’ perception of utility and barriers impede voluntary simulation use and overall use was limited. As programs undertake curricula redevelopment for CBME, mitigating barriers and improving perceived utility of laparoscopic simulation is vital to increase use and enhance skill development.