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Medicine college curriculum and problem based learning: a training program guided with Basic Life Support course


The medical college curriculum at the University of Londrina uses the PBL (problem based learning) method of teaching. This method is based on adult education and it is focused in learning to learn and doing to learn. One of the worries of this teaching method is the development of practical skills and the practicing of these skills before the application in patient care. The objective of this paper is to describe the experience of the Basic Life Support training in the curriculum of a medicine college that uses the PBL method.

Materials and methods

The Basic Life Support training uses a skills laboratory of the University Hospital. This laboratory has five skills classrooms equipped with video monitoring, training manikins with monitoring system, automatic external defibrillator simulator and other materials for technical support. The Basic Life Support training is divided in two parts of growing complexity and has the main objective of training the adult in prehospital cardio respiratory arrest. In the first year of the medicine college the students are divided into groups of 20 for the cognitive classes and groups of 10 for the skills or psychomotor classes of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) with one or two rescuers. In the third year of the college the students are divided in the same way for the reinforcement of the cognitive and the skills classes, now including the use of the automatic external defibrillator. The knowledge and skills performance evaluation is realized in the second year so the retention is well documented.


Since the institution of this method of teaching 240 students were trained in Basic Life Support. A first evaluation has been performed after 1 year of training in the first group of 80 students. The percentage of the students that performed right skills in this first evaluation was 84.9%. The initial results showed excellent performance of the students in the first evaluation and a good retention after 1 year of training. The students showed high interest for the subject with a frequency to the classes superior of 95%.


The institution of basic life support guided courses in the PBL curriculum of the medicine college is very important. The student that already has trained in CPR in the laboratories starts the patient care very well prepared and with a padronized view. This recommendation follows the International and American Heart Association recommendation for the padronization of CPR. This new recommendation says that the training of CPR may be started in the medical college and then reinforced later with other specific courses.

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Canesin, M., Timerman, S., Grion, C. et al. Medicine college curriculum and problem based learning: a training program guided with Basic Life Support course. Crit Care 7, P060 (2003).

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  • Skill Laboratory
  • Problem Base Learning
  • Adult Education
  • Practical Skill
  • Basic Life Support