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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 121-125

Learning statistics: Interprofessional survey of attitudes toward statistics using SATS-36

1 Department of Community Medicine, Melaka-Manipal Medical College, Melaka, Malaysia
2 Department of Paediatrics, Melaka-Manipal Medical College, Melaka, Malaysia

Correspondence Address:
Htoo Htoo Kyaw Soe
Melaka-Manipal Medical College, Jalan Batu Hampar, Bukit Baru, 75150 Melaka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/dmr.dmr_68_20

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Context: In medical education, statistics is part of the core training to enable the students to plan, design, analyze, and interpret the experimental data. It is believed that attitudes toward statistics play an important role in learning statistics. Aims: We conducted this study to assess the attitudes toward statistics among undergraduate medical and dentistry students. Settings and Design: This cross-sectional study was done among 3rd-year medical students and 4th-year dentistry students in a private medical college in Malaysia. Subjects and Methods: We employed purposive sampling and invited the 3rd-year medical students and the 4th-year dentistry students before the commencement of the biostatistics course. A total of 206 students participated in this study. We utilized SATS-36 scale which consisted of 36 items that were divided into six subscales such as affect, cognitive competence, value, difficulty, interest, and effort. Statistical Analysis Used: Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, independent t-test, and Spearman's rho correlation. Results: The students had positive attitudes toward statistics in most of the domains of SATS-36 except difficulty. There were no significant differences of attitudes toward statistics between male and female students. However, male students had a significantly higher mean score in the interest domain (mean difference 0.40 [95% confidence interval 0.07, 0.74]). Conclusions: The undergraduate medical and dentistry students had positive attitudes toward statistics, but the students found that statistics is a difficult subject. Hence, the instructors need to understand the student's attitudes and create effective learning strategies which not only provide knowledge and skills but also change student's attitudes toward the desired direction.

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