Providing video recordings of lecture material may enhance student flexibility, but does it alter attendance or influence their grade? This project assessed the extent and purpose of video usage by students and evaluated their impact on course performance within first-year basic science courses in a chiropractic curriculum.


All first-year students enrolled at a chiropractic college based in the United States were invited to complete a retrospective survey regarding video usage, attendance, and study behaviors for basic science courses they were enrolled during the previous term. Grades were third-party obtained for each consenting student. Statistical analysis included descriptive statistics and independent t tests for each course. Effect size using Cohen’s d was calculated for all statistically significant courses (p < .05).


Overall, 260 students completed the questionnaire assessing 18 courses in total. The perceived helpfulness of video recordings was associated with heavier usage, primarily to study for exams. Shorter summary videos were preferred by 78% of students over full lecture recordings. Use of videos to replace lectures increased from 21.9% to 53.2% in first through third trimester, respectively. Video use in Neuroanatomy I, Neuroanatomy II, Gross Anatomy II, Organ Histology, and Endocrinology were associated with lower exam scores and overall grades (p < .05), yielding moderate to large effect sizes.


Videos were used < 1 hour per week, primarily to study for exams. When used as a study tool, video use decreased course performance. Rewatching videos to prepare for exams may be mistaken for mastery of material.

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Author notes

Amberly Ferguson is an assistant professor in the Division of Life Sciences and Foundations at Palmer College of Chiropractic (1000 Brady St, Davenport, IA 52803; [email protected])

Author Contributions Concept development: AF, LN. Design: AF, LN. Supervision: AF, LN. Data collection/processing: AF, LN. Analysis/interpretation: LN. Literature search: AF, LN. Writing: AF, LN. Critical review: AF, LN.

This paper was selected as a 2023 National Board of Chiropractic Examiners Research Award at the Association of Chiropractic Colleges–Research Agenda Conference.