A UCF College of Medicine electronic manual that provides an innovative way for students to learn about the body’s cells and tissues received rave reviews at the annual meeting of the International Association of Medical Science Educators.

Dr. Mohammed Khalil, assistant professor of anatomy, presented a poster on his manual that brings together discussions of microanatomy, physiology and pathology – all with the aid of a computer. The program, developed with Instructional Technologist Debbie Kirkley, allows students to use an electronic telescope to view magnifications of human cells, then label those cells, take notes and quizzes on the information and email their assignments back to the instructor for feedback.

Because the material is computer-based, students have access to it 24/7.

The electronic lab manual encourages team learning and interaction with educational materials, characteristics that research shows appeals to “millennial-aged” learners like the UCF medical students. Dr. Khalil said millennial students prefer group learning that is interactive and provides frequent feedback from faculty members, rather than passive lecture-based learning. In that way, the manual furthers the College of Medicine’s goal of training medical students to be lifelong learners. Dr. Khalil said participants in the annual meeting were very positive about UCF’s innovative ways of cultivating learning.

“The feedback we received was very encouraging,” he said. “Today’s students want to participate in learning, not just be receivers of information. I love academia more than anything. When I can help my students learn that’s my satisfaction.”