Improving undergraduate medical education in Nigeria: Insight into the past
The first three in the series of Society of Gynaecology and Obstetrics of Nigeria (SOGON) lectures on “Frontiers in Medical Education,” in honor of Professor Linus Ajabor, had focused on internship and postgraduate medical education. This fourth lecture is about the evolution of undergraduate medical education in Nigeria from its rudimentary beginning in 1930 to the present. Lessons from the past include the desirability of tailoring medical education toward meeting national needs, doing proper needs assessment before planning and implementation, setting minimum standards for training institutions, and enforcing these standards through a credible process of accreditation. Recommendations for the future include a harmonization of the guidelines on minimum standards published by the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) and the minimum academic standards published by Nigeria’s National Universities Commission (NUC), and the conduct of joint accreditation by both agencies to maximize efficiency and reduce waste. There should also be mandatory training in pedagogy for clinician teachers, periodic curriculum reviews must be enforced, and simulation laboratories should be provided in all accredited medical schools.
Key words: Curriculum; medical education; Nigeria; pedagogy; undergraduate
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