OBJECTIVE: This pilot study provides firsthand feedback from medical students and residents in training regarding their perceptions of technology in medicine. METHOD: The authors distributed an e-mail invitation to an anonymous Web-based survey to medical students and residents in two different U.S. training institutions. RESULTS: Respondents unanimously expressed that technology skills were important in medical training and felt it most important to learn about electronic medical records and accessing scientific information on the Internet. At the point of patient care, trainees' preferred reference sources were the Internet and PDA, in that order. Most clinical trainees felt PDAs were critical in patient care and met their clinical needs, and they were most likely to use them for medication reference. The majority of trainees preferred printed media over digital media for initial learning, but the converse for referencing. Instructor-led small groups were viewed as the best environment in which to receive instruction. CONCLUSIONS: Trainees in medical education are technologically savvy and provide invaluable feedback regarding initiation, development and refinement of technological systems in medical training.
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