Development of and Validity Evidence for a Canine Ocular Model for Training Novice Veterinary Students to Perform a Fundic Examination.

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Indirect fundoscopy is challenging for novice learners, as patients are often intolerant of the procedure, impeding development of proficiency. To address this, we developed a canine ocular simulator that we hypothesized would improve student learning compared to live dogs. Six board-certified veterinary ophthalmologists and 19 secondyear veterinary students (novices) performed an indirect fundic examination on the model and live dog. Prior to assessment, novices were introduced to the skill with a standardized teaching protocol and practiced (without feedback) with either the model (n = 10) or live dog (n = 9) for 30 minutes. All participants evaluated realism and usefulness of the model using a Likert-type scale. Performance on the live dog and model was evaluated in all participants using time to completion of task, performance of fundic examination using a checklist and global score, identification of objects in the fundus of the model, and evaluation of time spent looking at the fundus of the model using eye tracking. Novices (trained on simulator or live dogs) were compared in fundic examination performance on the live dog and identification of shapes in the model. In general, experts performed the fundic examination faster (p ≤ 0.0003) and more proficiently than the novices, although there were no differences in eye tracking behavior between groups (p ≥ 0.06). No differences were detected between training on simulator versus live dog in development of fundoscopy skills in novices (p ≥ 0.20). These findings suggest that this canine model may be an effective tool to train students to perform fundoscopy.

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Journal of veterinary medical education

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