BACKGROUND: Journal clubs play an important role in the education of orthopaedic surgery residents; however, there are sparse data available on the characteristics that make journal clubs effective.OBJECTIVE: The primary goal of this study was to determine the characteristics of effective journal clubs as identified by orthopaedic residents and faculty. We sought to compare the opinions of residents and faculty in order to identify areas that may benefit from future research and discussion.DESIGN: Orthopaedic surgery residents and faculty at residency programs around the country were surveyed anonymously. The survey was designed to determine the contribution of various journal club characteristics on the effectiveness of journal club. Nonparametric statistics were used to test for goodness-of-fit, and to compare responses between faculty and residents.RESULTS: A total of 204 individuals participated. The most important goals of journal clubs were teaching the skillset of evaluating scientific papers (2.0 ± 1.2 [mean rank ± standard deviation, on a scale of 6, with 1 being most important]), encouraging participants to read current orthopaedic literature, (2.4 ± 1.1), and instilling career-long habits of reading the orthopaedic literature among residents (3.1 ± 1.3). Mandatory attendance (71.8%), monthly journal clubs (80.9%), resident presentation of articles (86.7%), and discussion of 3 to 5 papers (78.7%) were thought to lead to more effective clubs. The most clinically relevant articles published within the last year (63.8%), and classic articles that have influenced practice (68.1%) were preferred. Participation and attendance (2.4 ± 1.5) and paper selection (2.6 ± 1.5) were the most important characteristics overall.CONCLUSIONS: In orthopaedics, journal clubs fulfill the role of encouraging reading of the literature, as well as educating residents and faculty. There are many possible club formats, but some are clearly felt to be more effective. Particular attention should be paid to attendance, participation, and paper selection.
View details for PubMedID 28822821