Determinants of Postgraduate Students' Choices of Speciality
Introduction: Postgraduate specialization is perceived as essential for success with high competition for enrolment. The reasons how medical students choose their postgraduate specialty are complex. Understanding the factors that influence career choice helps in workforce planning. So, we tried to identify the specialty preferred by postgraduate students and the factors that influenced these choices in a post graduate institution.
Methods: A cross-sectional observational study was conducted in National Academy of Medical Sciences. All the postgraduate students of batch 2011 AD were enrolled for the study. The responses were rated on a five point Likert scale.
Results: Significant gender preference was observed in specialties. General Surgery, Internal Medicine and Orthopedics were chosen by male students (P-Values, respectively, 0.001, 0.033 and 0.000) while Obstetrics and Gynecology and Ophthalmology being chosen by female students (P-Values, respectively, 0.000 and 0.006). Significant difference was observed between male and female student responses to the factor – scope in future (P – value 0.042), between married and unmarried students to the factor – workload flexibility (P – value 0.011), students who tried to go abroad versus who didn’t, for the factor – Illness of self/family/friend (P – value 0.016), and between those who worked in rural area versus those who didn’t, to the factor – Influence of friends/ seniors (P – value 0.038).
Conclusions: Various factors affect the choices for preferred specialty. Policy makers should look at the needs of the nation, and ensure that specialty postgraduate education programs reflect those needs.
Keywords: career choices; likert scale; medical education; postgraduate specialty. | PubMed
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