Original article
Cohort study to evaluate the assimilation and retention of knowledge after theoretical test in undergraduate health science
Jorge Josaphat Ferreira, , Lukewell Maguta, António Bernardo Chissaca, Inocêncio Fancisco Jussa, Sara Sarajabo Abudo
Faculty of Health Sciences, Lurio University, Nampula, Mozambique
Received 02 August 2016, Accepted 24 October 2016

Each year new undergraduate courses are emerging in Mozambique, and with them the number of students has been increasing exponentially. In higher education institutions, particularly in the health sciences, knowledge retention becomes essential for learning and for efficient and effective training of capable health professionals.


This is a prospective cohort study, conducted at the Lurio University, Mozambique. To evaluate the assimilation and retention of knowledge, a theoretical lesson was taught. The class time was 90 minutes divided into a theoretical stageand the other was a discussion stage (30 minutes) for clarification of doubts. Questionnaire was administered in the pretest, post-test and after six months.


Of all students (n=241), enrolled in the second semester of the first year of the course, 190 students did the pretest, 187 did the post-test and 183 students did the test after six months. Before the lecture none of the course managed to achieve the satisfactory percentage of 75% of correct answers (p<0,001). Assimilation of knowledge in the post-test performance there has been a significant increase in knowledge, in all questions the students reached the recommended percentage as “satisfactory knowledge” (p<0.001). The post-test suggests that participants in this study had a significant capacity of memorization which is essential in the retention of knowledge.


It can be concluded that the assimilative and retention capacity improve the student knowledge immediately after a theoretical lesson with addition audiovisual resources, and the acquired knowledge remains even though there is a deterioration with passage of the time.

Assimilation capacity, Retention capacity, Theoretical lesson, Undergraduate, Health science

Open Access

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Porto Biomedical Journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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