Do Physician Assistant Students Use Retrieval-Based Strategies While Studying?

Journal Article (Journal Article)

INTRODUCTION: Research on learning indicates that active retrieval of information (ie, testing) enhances student retention of knowledge, yet, it is underutilized by learners. This research investigated physician assistant (PA) students' study strategies and the extent to which retrieval-based strategies (RBS) are used. METHODS: A survey instrument adapting items from Hartwig and Dunlosky's Study Habits Survey was administered to first-year PA students to investigate their study behaviors over a 4-week time frame in preparation for multiple-choice exams. RESULTS: Seventy-eight students (88%) completed the survey. The most common study strategies were reviewing lecture slide decks (83%), reading notes (78%), and taking notes (73%). Retrieval-based study strategies most often used were practicing test questions (38%) and creating questions and responding to them (12%). DISCUSSION: Many PA students are underutilizing retrieval-based study strategies and might benefit from more awareness of this learning approach as well as faculty guidance about how to incorporate it into their exam preparation.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Pinheiro, SO; Hibbard, ST; Hudak, NM

Published Date

  • September 1, 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 33 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 244 - 247

PubMed ID

  • 35998051

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1941-9449

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1097/JPA.0000000000000455


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States