This article describes the development and application of new didactic methods for use in computer-assisted teaching and learning systems for training doctors and dentists. Taking the Meducase project as an example, didactic models and their technological implementation are explained, togheter with the limitations of imparting knowledge with the “new media.” In addition, legal concepts for a progressive, pragmatic, and innovative distribution of knowledge to undergraduate students are presented. In conclusion, potential and visions for the wide use of electronic learning in the German and European universities in the future are discussed.
Self-directed learning (SDL) is a key component in both undergraduate education and lifelong learning for medical practitioners. E-learning can already be used to promote SDL at undergraduate level. The Meducase project uses self-directed, constructive, case- and problem-oriented learning within a learning platform for medical and dental students. In the long run, e-learning programs can only be successful in education if there is consistent analysis and implementation of value-added factors and the development and use of media-didactic concepts matched to electronic learning. The use of innovative forms of licensing—open source licenses for software and similar licenses for content—facilitates continuous, free access to these programs for all students and teachers. These legal concepts offer the possibility of innovative knowledge distribution, quality assurance and standardization across specializations, university departments, and possibly even national borders.