Journal of Surgical Simulation 2019; 6: 23 - 26

Published: 10 June 2019


Original article

YouTube as an educational tool: the launch of a simulated surgical procedures channel

Marina Yiasemidou, Andrew Kordowicz, Jonathan de Siqueira and Michael J. Gough
Corresponding author: Marina Yiasemidou, 7.26 Clinical Science Building, St. James University Hospital, Beckett Street, Leeds LS9 7TF, UK. Email:


Background: Electronic audiovisual materials have the potential to revolutionize surgical training. The widespread use of social media has made this medium more accessible to surgical trainees. The success of online resources is measured with quantitative measures such as viewer numbers, which do not necessarily reflect the quality of the didactic tools provided. The aim of this study is to assess face and content validity of YouTube as a free multimedia channel for surgical education.

Methods: In 2014, Yorkshire and the Humber School of Surgery launched a YouTube educational channel aimed at providing additional multimedia training experience to core surgical trainees and anyone else who wishes to use it globally. At the time this study was conducted, the channel included 14 videos of simulated procedures and each video was linked to an online survey.  

Results: At the time this study was conducted, 53 viewers had answered an online survey, which was voluntary. Forty-three of the 53 responders found the uploaded videos relevant to their educational needs and 47 assessed the quality of the videos as good. The length and commentary of the videos received praise. Interestingly, the responders considered e-learning resources to be as vital as courses and books. The viewers would like to see more real procedures in future e-learning outlets.  

Conclusion: The YouTube channel showed good face and content validity, and viewers demonstrated good acceptance of online didactic videos. The authors suggest that the quality of online resources should be assessed with similar tools, as viewership may not necessarily reflect the value of the resources.


technology enhanced learning; multimedia; online teaching