Digital competencies in medical education in Switzerland: an overview of the current situation.

Hautz, Stefanie C.; Hoffmann, Michele; Exadaktylos, Aristomenis K.; Hautz, Wolf E.; Sauter, Thomas C. (2020). Digital competencies in medical education in Switzerland: an overview of the current situation. GMS Journal for Medical Education, 37(6), Doc62. German Medical Science 10.3205/zma001355

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Background: Today's medical students are growing up in a digital age in which the use of smartphones and smart devices is now irrevocably part of professional life. However, the abilities to use these devices that have become so ubiquitous in private life can only be partially transferred to work with patients and the medical setting. Since little is known about digitalization in medical education, the aim of this paper is to gain an overview of the current training in digital competencies at Swiss universities. Methods: The medical deans at all Swiss universities were contacted by telephone and informed about an online survey. The invitation to fill out the Survey Monkey questionnaire was subsequently sent by email to the specific contacts at each university. The survey consisted of questions to be answered using a defined scale and open-ended questions. The survey's focus, topics involving digital competencies, is based on the content in the Principal Relevant Objectives and Framework for Integrative Learning and Education in Switzerland (PROFILES) and the National Competency-based Catalogue of Learning Objective in Undergraduate Medicine (NKLM). Results: All of the dean's offices that were contacted participated in the survey. The topics on digitalization were all rated as relevant or very relevant. Our survey shows a heterogeneous picture in terms of implementing PROFILE and NKLM content. A few universities have well-established educational approaches or even implemented curricula, but often these are still in development. Participants also mentioned factors that are necessary for successfully setting up and implementing curricula dealing with digitalization and factors that can impede such efforts. Conclusion: The importance of acquiring digital competencies during medical study is known and recognized by all Swiss medical schools. Curricular integration varies in its progress and represents major challenges for the medical faculties. It is precisely the inclusion of students in such efforts that may be a potential response to this challenge.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Intensive Care, Emergency Medicine and Anaesthesiology (DINA) > University Emergency Center

UniBE Contributor:

Hautz, Stefanie Carola, Exadaktylos, Aristomenis, Hautz, Wolf, Sauter, Thomas Christian


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




German Medical Science




Romana Saredi

Date Deposited:

30 Dec 2020 07:42

Last Modified:

02 Mar 2023 23:34

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Switzerland digital competencies digital transformation medical education




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