Is culture important in the choice of role models? Experiences from a culturally diverse medical school

Michelle Mclean*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


In a multicultural student population at a South African medical school, for over one-third of students (Years 1-5) undertaking a traditional curriculum, culture was an important consideration in their choice of a role model. This was particularly so for senior students, perhaps reflecting their relatively recent exposure to patients and their forthcoming internship. Some student comments might, however, be interpreted as reflecting a rigid perception of culture that could translate into a possible lack of respect for others cultures. It is therefore imperative that each institution provide appropriate early and continous mainstream diversity training, as well as identify role models to match the student profile. With the increasing diversity of students globally, this issue of culture should assume even greater importance in medical education that it is currently afforded.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)142-149
Number of pages8
JournalMedical Teacher
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2004
Externally publishedYes


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