Daily News Boston CHEST 2024

October 6-9, 2024

Social media visuals can be effective educational tools

Roozehra Khan, DO, FCCP
Roozehra Khan, DO, FCCP

Are you a visual learner? Do you take to social media for the latest trends? If so, you are not alone. Research shows images and visual tools increase learner engagement and improve retention, and social media is an effective way to get the message across.

Roozehra Khan, DO, FCCP, along with Abul Hamid Alraiyes, MD, FCCP, and Joshua Landy, MD, will share how visual abstracts can increase the dissemination of research, how to build an educational video, and how to use knowledge-sharing medical imaging apps during A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words: Increasing Engagement of Patients and Learners Using Visual Tools on Sunday at 10:45am in room 297 of the convention center.

“Visual media is incredibly important, and doctors should be paying attention to this transformation happening in education and research,” Dr. Khan said. “The session will help doctors, leaders, and educators understand the importance of new media choices to help curate better educational and research materials. This is the future.”

With new technology, learning doesn’t have to be simply text-based or didactic. Visual tools are effective in almost every teaching and learning scenario, said Dr. Khan, assistant professor of clinical medicine at Western University of Health Sciences. The session will review different visual techniques and touch on infographics for patient education if time allows.

“Visual tools create a clear language,” she said. “Reading text is harder for our brains to process compared to pictures. Our brains are much better at processing a picture than text language. If you think about it, I could read a book, but if there’s a picture with it, then I automatically know the scene, characters, and emotions going on.”

Dr. Khan, assistant editor, web and multimedia for the journal CHEST®, conducted the study “Snapchat as a Tool for Medical Education and Opportunity for Engagement” with her mentor Christopher Carroll, MD, MS, FCCP, from Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.

A Snapchat educational takeover was launched in conjunction with CHEST to advocate for the use of ultrasonography. The study showed Snapchat sessions may be a powerful tool for medical education since the content disappears, imparting urgency to learn and absorb information. But that’s not all. During the session, 149-218 unique viewers captured 79 screenshots to their phones of the 35 educational snaps uploaded during the session. All of the snaps had at least one screenshot taken.

“We learned that people loved to take screenshots of visual educational materials,” Dr. Khan said, noting Snapchat is a highly effective platform for doing so.

The researchers also received positive feedback from participants in the study.

The study “Visual Abstracts to Disseminate Research on Social Media” also concluded that social media, specifically Twitter, is an effective way to share research. In the study, visual abstracts were disseminated more than text-based ones.

Dr. Khan blogs at TheFemaleDoc.com. Tweet her @RozyKhanDO.


“Visual media is incredibly important, and doctors should be paying attention to this
transformation happening in education and research.”

Roozehra Khan, DO, FCCP