Microcomputer as patient educator

R. J. Beck, L. B.M. Ellis, D. M. Scott, J. R. Raines, N. Hakanson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


A computer-assisted lesson on general drug knowledge as a patient education tool is described. A drug I.Q. quiz is one of seven microcomputer lessons available to patients in the waiting room of an ambulatory-care clinic. The drug quiz consists of 19 multiple-choice and six true or false questions. After each question, the computer responds with a brief paragraph keyed to the answer selected by the user. If the answer for a multiple-choice question is incorrect, the user can answer the question before proceeding. At the end of the lession, a score is graphically displayed and the user is asked to evaluate the lesson. The computer stores the total number of lessons completed, total scores, number of times each question was answered incorrectly on first and second attempts, number of times each question was answered a second time, and each user's responses to the quiz and evaluation questions. Based on 313 completions of the drug quiz from September 1981 through May 1982, 86% of the users stated that they learned at least something useful, and 72% liked the quiz. The mean (± S.D.) number of correct answers on the first attempt was 16 ± 5; scores improved by an average of 2.5 ± 2 by reanswering questions. Of 2421 multiple-choice questions answered incorrectly, 62% were reanswered. Of these second attempts, 52% were correct. Item validity scores indicated that the drug quiz serves as a realistic appraisal of drug knowledge. The microcomputer can be an effective medium for patient education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2105-2108
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Hospital Pharmacy
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 1982


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