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The utility of virtual reality surgical simulation in the undergraduate otorhinolaryngology curriculum

  • T Hardcastle (a1) and A Wood (a1) (a2)

To examine the impact of temporal bone virtual reality surgical simulator use in the undergraduate otorhinolaryngology curriculum.


Medical students attended a workshop involving the use of a temporal bone virtual reality surgical simulator. Students completed a pre-workshop questionnaire on career interests. A post-workshop questionnaire evaluated the perceived usefulness and enjoyment of the virtual reality surgical simulator experience, and assessed changes in their interest in ENT.


Thirty-two fifth-year University of Auckland medical students were recruited. The majority of students (53.1 per cent) had already chosen their career path. The simulator experience was useful for: stimulating thoughts around career plans (71.9 per cent), providing hands-on experience (93.8 per cent) and teaching disease processes (93.8 per cent). After the workshop, 53.1 per cent of students were more interested in a career in ENT.


Virtual reality may be a fun and engaging way of teaching ENT. Furthermore, it could help guide student career planning.

Corresponding author
Author for correspondence: Dr Tim Hardcastle, Department of Otorhinolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, Waikato Hospital, Hamilton, New Zealand E-mail: Fax: +64 9 377 9656
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Dr T Hardcastle takes responsibility for the integrity of the content of the paper

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  • EISSN: 1748-5460
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