Socratic Method of Teaching in Medical Education

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Rehan Ahmed Khan


Socrates (469-399BC) is regarded as the founder of Western philosophy. His method of teaching was based on a shared discourse between teachers and students. He would ask thought-provoking questions from his students. This would result in motivating the students to think and generate debate. This was an iterative process and would continue till the answers to the questions were found or discussion was exhausted. This method is termed as the Socratic method of teaching (Birnbache, 1999). It also involves the zone of proximal development and scaffolding as advocated by Vygotsky. Many teaching methods, based on small group teaching such as problem-based learning, case-based learning, one minute preceptor rely on the philosophy of
Socratic method.
The Socratic method relies on getting the answers from the students rather than telling them the answers directly. Socrates in his sessions would pick students randomly and ask them a question. The student would either answer the question if s/he knows it or would learn it from the discussion between her/his peers and
the teachers.

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How to Cite
Khan, R. (2021). Socratic Method of Teaching in Medical Education. Health Professions Educator Journal, 4(1), 6.