Self-Regulated Learning and Psychomotor Skill Development in Second-Year Veterinary Students
Previous studies have shown that students who use self-regulated learning strategies have demonstrated improved academic, sport, and medical psychomotor skill mastery. In veterinary education, deliberate practice is currently the educational model for psychomotor skill development in veterinary students. However, with the advent of clinical skills labs, students are expected to self-direct their own development of psychomotor skills, such as suturing, intravenous (IV) catheter placement, and physical exams. Self-directed learning requires the use of self-regulated learning strategies. This research study demonstrates the effect of introducing self-regulated learning theory and deliberate practice theory versus introducing only deliberate theory on the suturing abilities of second-year veterinary students at the Ontario Veterinary College in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. It was theorized that students who use self-regulated learning strategies and deliberate practice to master their skills would out-perform those students who only used deliberate practice. This was not demonstrated with this research and may have been due to the intervention which involved the introduction of these theories to both the test and control group, or to the small group size that resulted from attrition from this research project.