Firstly, thank you very much for purchasing access to this valuable resource. We hope that you enjoy being a member of this Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) for the Diploma in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (DO-HNS) Part 2 Objectively Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE). A lot of time and effort went into producing the content and building the website and any feedback towards improving the end-user experience is most welcome.
This is your learning environment
This learning environment can be your personal learning space. We would encourage you to make some handwritten notes and process as much of the information provided here as you wish. You can print whole pages and revise from paper if you find that easier.
As with most medical education resources you should not constitute the information given here as medical advice. Whilst every effort has been made to ensure that the content is accurate and evidence-based, we cannot guarantee that errors do not exist within this website or any links provided. The author(s) of the DO-HNS VLE will not be responsible for any adverse outcome resulting from this site or any links contained herein.
The images have either been downloaded from sources consenting to the reuse of their images with attribution, or they are the property of the author. Those images that are not labelled are copyrighted by Mr. Gordon A G McKenzie. The reuse of any images contained within this website without prior permission, that are not already available for redistribution without restriction, will be challenged subject to copyright law. If any images used here are in fact copyrighted elsewhere or otherwise not used in accordance with their license, please alert us as soon as possible so that they can be removed and/or permission requested for their reuse.
Please read the full Terms and Conditions here.
The DO-HNS Part 2 OSCE
Full information is available on the Intercollegiate MRCS exams website and we recommend that you read the official guide provided in full. This will fully explain the format, rules and regulations of the examination.
The Virtual Learning Environment
A VLE is an online system for delivering learning materials to students. For the purposes of this VLE you should view yourself as a student preparing for the DO-HNS Part 2 OSCE. The VLE is open 24 hours, 7 days a week and you should consider it as a compliment to your 'classroom' (i.e. clinical practice - the operating theatre, wards, clinic and emergency department). Knowledge will be the main aspect of teaching here, as skills are best taught in the real world. There is no substitute for hands-on practice and you are strongly encouraged to utilise your time treating patients as the dominant source of learning. This creates a blended learning approach. Your attitudes will be assessed throughout your training and summarised during your Annual Review of Competence Progression.
Pedagogy is the study of educational theory and how this is put into practice. The DO-HNS VLE was founded based on pedagogy. The learning outcomes are constructively aligned to The Intercollegiate Surgical Curriculum for Otolaryngology. They are also aligned to the format of the learning process: a specific problem is presented and questions typical of those found in the DO-HNS Part 2 OSCE are given. Many of you will already have some knowledge of otolaryngology, so this seems a natural way to learn.
A question-centred approach is common to many online learning products: eMRCS, Pastest and OneExam. However, they all have a tendency to reveal the answer immediately in an instant feedback model. In the DO-HNS VLE, after the user attempts a question, an evidence-based learning and revision summary can be reviewed. These are produced for the specific topic and aligned both to the learning outcomes and assessment. Attempting a question, learning and/or revising the subject matter, and then revealing the answer, provides two levels of engagement. Answers are thus provided to check existing knowledge, understanding and your short answer question technique. The answers do not teach, they self-assess. It is recommended to follow this process. Automated narrative answer marking is difficult to perfect and can be frustrating for users, hence this has been avoided in the DO-HNS VLE.
The basis to this approach stems from the models of resource-based and constructivist learning (see review). Many DO-HNS candidates will be millennials who have grown up during a time where technology is used as a daily resource. This consumption of resources in real life mirrors the engagement within a VLE. The DO-HNS VLE is a facilitator, the questions are the primary focus, and then a variety of sources are used to self-discover information. This process better prepares you for real life and the DO-HNS OSCE.
Being a member of the DO-HNS VLE personalises your learning. In addition, membership allows an element of collaborative learning through interaction on our forum. We would encourage you to collaborate with both virtual peers and those within your immediate professional network.