Key Information

Number of student partners:  10 students, (4 1st Year undergraduates, 6 2nd Year undergraduates)

Number of staff partners:  7

Length of project: Two months (summer holiday)

Weekly time commitment for student:  Two weeks full-time for 1st year students, three weeks full-time for 2nd year students. 

Imperial College School of Medicine

Lead staff partner:  Dr Tanvi Agrawal

Other staff partners:  Dr Michael Emerson, Mr Alex Furr, Mr Ashish Hemani, Dr James Moss, Dr Amir Sam, Prof Mary Morrell

Student partners:

Year 1: Chinar Berry, Ahmed Turkman, Payam Soleimani-Nouri, Ria Gaglani

Year 2: Michael Jiang, Salman M Khan, Shubham Sharma, Run-Zhi Chen, Muntaha Naeem, Hector Sinzinkayo Iradukunda

Background for project

The ongoing MBBS curriculum review recognized the need for an interactive, user-friendly and expansive self-testing resource for the Year 1&2 medical students, mapped onto the programme’s Learning Outcomes, which could provide the students with high quality feedback. This led to the development of the Imperial MedSTEP StudentShapers project.

The project consisted of 3 phases of activity – Summer placement program, development of digital platform and dissemination. 10 student partners were recruited from the Year 1&2 MBBS cohort to develop a self-test question bank. The questions are currently being reviewed by the MBBS faculty and will be uploaded onto MedLearn website. This will be followed by a phase of dissemination.



  • Summer placement program led to the creation of 200+ questions spanning over 11 modules.
  • Questions will be hosted on an interactive & user-friendly digital platform - MedLearn website.
    The implementation of weekly group gathering (round table) helped improve my capacity to receive and give criticism in a professional manner, which undoubtedly improved my teamwork skills"

    Student partner

  • Student partners have developed several different questions types – single best answers (SBAs), fill-in-the blanks, drag & drops and short answer questions for each topic.
  • To promote active learning, most SBAs follow a standard format: Question, options, explanation of each option, and feedback in a short topic summary in tabular/flowchart format.
  • 600+ Year 1&2 MBBS students will have access to a question bank reviewed by the faculty.



Benefits to student learning and further outcomes

I think it gave students a valuable insight into how questions are designed, which is helpful in understanding how to prepare for our own exams and how to approach different questions."

Student partner

Post-internship feedback from the StudentShapers student partners indicates that nine out of 10 of them found the summer placement to be a useful exercise for their own learning process. 8 out of 10 of the student partners agreed that being involved in the question development process during this internship will improve their future exam preparation.

Imperial MedSTEP will now be launched in two phases – October 2018 for the year 2 MBBS students and January 2019 for the year 1 MBBS students. The launch event will entail showcasing specially filmed video of the StudentShapers student partners describing their experience, benefits of active learning and correct use of this resource. A dedicated @mbbs_studyskillsInstagram account has also been set up in collaboration with the Head of Academic Study Skills to encourage MBBS year 1&2 students to use these self-test questions regularly and to inform the students of updates and question-drops!

Future work will include evaluating the dissemination block in 2018/19 and running the summer placement program in 2019 to increase the database of self-test questions covering more topics.