Clinical Reasoning Training based on the analysis of clinical case using a virtual environment.

Introduction: Students experience difficulties defining a sequential order and analyzing variables when solving a clinical problem on real-time. Learning in a virtual environment using PBL and e-learning promotes hypothesis-generating research and case study through clinical reasoning. Methods: Twenty-two physical therapy students enrolled in a Clinical Reasoning course were asked to solve virtual clinical cases that included three different fields: orthopedic, cardiovascular/pulmonary and neurological. To evaluate the intervention, students’ perception as well as their lecture/lab academic performance, were considered. Results: An increase in academic performance in both lecture and lab average grades in comparison to previous years (ANOVA test, *p < 0.05). Fifty-eight percent of students reported prior study, critical thinking and technical language were aspects improved by this resource. Half of the enquired subjects also reported not having enough time to solve cases and suggested be given more adequate feedback. Conclusions: After this experience, teacher’s role as a facilitator in the teaching learning process, putting the studentin a leading role by using metacognitive strategies in tune with technology. Case-solving presents an advantage by improving the process of hypothesis-generation based on the information gathered from a case study problem. Early introduction of teaching strategies promote a systematic practice such as critical thinking through case study, and debate about the feedback needed for its achievement
Clinical reasoning, Performance, E-learning, Medical education, Health professions