Application of E-learning to Adapt Medical Education during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Experience of a Developing Country

Document Type : Short Communication


1 Department of Medical Education, School of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

2 Department of Community Medicine, School of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Science, Mashhad, Iran


Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has created significant challenges in medical education. The traditional educational model was accepted as a gold standard before COVID-19. However, in the context of the pandemic, it is necessary to provide educational programs through e-learning emphasizing effective interactions.
Method: In this study, an attempt has been made to examine the experience of Mashhad University of Medical Sciences regarding adaptation in training medical students and residents in the face of COVID-19 pandemic, emphasizing maintaining the safety of students, residents, faculty members, and patients.
Results: In the face of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Faculty of Medicine of Mashhad University of Medical Sciences used novel methods, including the flipped classroom, virtual classes, electronic educational materials, and telehealth clinics. In addition, virtual education was conducted with students'/residents' involvement by holding morning report/case reports/virtual club journal meetings jointly and in collaboration with various training groups. In total, 9638 electronic educational content and 1648 webinar sessions were implemented. Other approaches carried out during the pandemic were planning electronic assessments and conducting online tests.
Conclusion: Education with digital technologies and e-learning facilities can partially fill the educational gap in conditions like the COVID-19 pandemic.


Main Subjects

[1]. Ong MT-Y, Ling SK-K, Wong RM-Y, Ho KK-W, Chow SK-H, Cheung LW-H, et al. Impact of COVID-19 on Orthopaedic clinical service, education and research in a University hospital. J Orthop Translat, 2020; 25: 125-27.
[2]. Mack Y. Su, Evelyn Lilly, JiaDe Yu, and Shinjita Das. Asynchronous tele-dermatology in medical education: Lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic. JAAD Online, 2020; 83(3): e267-68.
[3]. Heydari A.A, Maleki M, Niroumand S. Predictive Validity of Annual Written Exams and Written Tests for Assistant's Promotion of Mashhad University of Medical Science. mededj. 2020; 8 (2):40-45. Persian.
[4]. Chertoff JD, Zarzour JG, Morgan DE, Lewis PJ, Canon CL, Harvey JA. The Early Influence and Effects of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic on Resident Education and Adaptations. J Am Coll Radiol. 2020;17(10):1322-28. doi: 10.1016/j.jacr.2020.07.022.
[5]. Norris D. M., & Lefrere P. (2010). Transformation through expeditionary change using online learning and competenceā€building technologies. Research in Learning Technology, 2010; 19(1).
[6]. Niroumand S, Mastour H, Moodi Ghalibaf A, Shamshirian A, Moghadasin M. Medical Students’ Attitude Toward E-learning During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Shiraz E-Med J. 2022;23(9):e121340.
[7]. Pokhrel S, Chhetri R. A Literature Review on Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Teaching and Learning. Higher Education for the Future, 2021; 8(1), 133–41. 
[8]. Duong AT, Van Tassel SH, Alzaga Fernandez AG, Amin A, Chadha N, Dagi Glass LR, et al.. Medical Education and Path to Residency in Ophthalmology in the COVID-19 Era: Perspective from Medical Student Educators. Ophthalmology. 2020;127(11):e95-e98. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2020.07.036.
[9]. Mastour H, Eslami Hasan Abadi S, Nili M, Delavar A, zarei E. Real Time Electronic For2020mative Assessment in Medical Education and Its Impact on Motivational Beliefs and Self-regulation Strategies. Future Med Educ J, 2018; 8(1): 42-46. doi: 10.22038/fmej.2018.32080.1204
[10]. Sundaram KM, Pevzner SJ, Magarik M, Couture P, Omary RA, Donnelly EF. Preliminary Evaluation of Gamification in Residency Training. J Am Coll Radiol. 2019;16(9 Pt A):1201-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jacr.2019.02.040.
[11]. Mastour H, Emadzadeh A, Moodi Ghalibaf A, Hashemy S. Gaps in the Clinical Competency in Medical School Graduates: A Cross-Sectional Study Based on the National Objective Structured Clinical Examination. Future Med Educ J, 2022; 12(1):29-34 -. doi: 10.22038/fmej.2021.56362.1390
[12]. Alqurshi A.  Investigating the impact of COVID-19 lockdown on pharmaceutical education in Saudi Arabia – A call for a remote teaching contingency strategy. Saudi Pharm J. 2020; 28, (9): 1075-83.
[13]. Imielski B. The detrimental effect of COVID-19 on subspecialty medical education. Surg. 2020; 168(2): 218-19.
[14]. Sousa MJ, Carmo M, Gonçalves A C, Cruz R, Martins JM.  Creating knowledge and entrepreneurial capacity for HE students with digital education methodologies: Differences in the perceptions of students and entrepreneurs. J Bus Res, 2019; 94(1): 227–40.