Massive Online Learning Courses (MOOCs) are open to anyone with an internet connection, removing the geographic restrictions that come with institution-centric learning. As well including traditional learning resources (filmed lectures, reading lists, embedded problems), they often include interactive community forums. MOOCs are a growing resource covering diverse areas, some of which will be of interest to trainee surgeons. For example, EdX (which includes big-hitters Harvard and MIT as partners) offers relevant courses in areas such as biological sciences, health technology, global health, and bio-imaging.
Specific online learning platforms for surgeons are also proliferating fast. The Edinburgh Surgical Sciences Curriculum is a flexible, online Masters program designed for early years surgical trainees. Subspecialty courses (in general and vascular surgery) have since been developed for more senior trainees.
These programs support the acquisition of relevant theoretical knowledge. At eoSurgical, we are determined to take these principles into the arena of psychomotor skills learning. We want trainees to optimise use of our eoSim simulator hardware by coupling their learning with our SurgTrac training platform that provides objective performance metrics and skills curricula. By tethering learning resources to an online learning environment, SurgTrac harnesses the power of MOOCs, creating a global community of surgical trainees who can interact and inspire one another.