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What will it take? Pathways, time and funding: Australian medical students’ perspective on clinician-scientist training

Overview of attention for article published in BMC Medical Education, December 2017
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Title
What will it take? Pathways, time and funding: Australian medical students’ perspective on clinician-scientist training
Published in
BMC Medical Education, December 2017
DOI 10.1186/s12909-017-1081-2
Pubmed ID
Authors

Diann S. Eley, Charmaine Jensen, Ranjeny Thomas, Helen Benham

Abstract

Clinician-scientists are in decline worldwide. They represent a unique niche in medicine by bridging the gap between scientific discovery and patient care. A national, integrated approach to training clinician-scientists, typically programs that comprise a comprehensive MD-PhD pathway, are customary. Such a pathway is lacking in Australia. The objective was to gather perceptions from Australian medical students on factors they perceive would influence their decision to pursue clinician-scientist training. A cross-sectional mixed methods design used quantitative and qualitative questions in an online self-report survey with medical students from a four-year MD program. Quantitative measures comprised scaled response questions regarding prior experience and current involvement in research, and short- and long-term opinions about factors that influence their decisions to undertake a research higher degree (RHD) during medical school. Qualitative questions gathered broader perceptions of what a career pathway as a clinician-scientist would include and what factors are most conducive to a medical student's commitment to MD-PhD training. Respondents (N = 418; 51% female) indicated Time, Funding and Pathway as the major themes arising from the qualitative data, highlighting negative perceptions rather than possible benefits to RHD training. The lack of an evident Pathway was inter-related to Time and Funding. Themes were supported by the quantitative data. Sixty percent of students have previous research experience of varying forms, and 90% report a current interest, mainly to improve their career prospects. The data emphasise the need for an MD-PhD pathway in Australia. A model that provides an early, integrated, and exclusive approach to research training pathways across all stages of medical education is suggested as the best way to rejuvenate the clinician-scientist. A national pathway that addresses factors influencing career decision making throughout the medical education continuum should include an appropriate funding structure, and provide early and continuing advice and mentoring. It should be flexible, gender equitable, and include post-graduate training. The implications of implementing MD-PhD programs represent a substantial investment. However this should not be a deterrent to Australia's commitment to an MD-PhD pathway, but rather a challenge to help ensure our future healthcare is guided by highly trained and competent clinician-scientists.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 3 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 29 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 29 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Bachelor 5 17%
Researcher 3 10%
Student > Doctoral Student 3 10%
Student > Postgraduate 2 7%
Student > Ph. D. Student 2 7%
Other 7 24%
Unknown 7 24%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 6 21%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 2 7%
Nursing and Health Professions 2 7%
Psychology 2 7%
Neuroscience 2 7%
Other 8 28%
Unknown 7 24%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 2. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 10 December 2017.
All research outputs
#7,370,557
of 12,276,356 outputs
Outputs from BMC Medical Education
#1,090
of 1,676 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#177,361
of 344,613 outputs
Outputs of similar age from BMC Medical Education
#85
of 105 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 12,276,356 research outputs across all sources so far. This one is in the 37th percentile – i.e., 37% of other outputs scored the same or lower than it.
So far Altmetric has tracked 1,676 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a little more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 6.1. This one is in the 30th percentile – i.e., 30% of its peers scored the same or lower than it.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 344,613 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one is in the 44th percentile – i.e., 44% of its contemporaries scored the same or lower than it.
We're also able to compare this research output to 105 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one is in the 15th percentile – i.e., 15% of its contemporaries scored the same or lower than it.