Research knowledge and skills in primary medical training: A crosssectional audit

Colleen Cheek, Richard Hays, Penny Allen, Janie Dade Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch

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Background: Internationally, medical education has either adopted, or is moving toward, a Masterslevel qualification at completion. This reflects the higher-level learning outcomes and potentiallyfacilitation of thinking and decision-making required of medical graduates. In Australia, the maindifference between bachelor and masters programs appears to be the level of research skills training.This study explores the characteristics of research training in medical schools and alignment with highereducation qualification frameworks.Methods: A cross-sectional audit was conducted of 22 medical schools in Australia and New Zealand,seeking information on: degree type, entry requirement, research knowledge and skills taught, teachingformat, and barriers to offering students research experiences.Results: Information about 15 medical programs was obtained, with Australian QualificationsFramework or New Zealand Qualifications Framework Level 7, 8 or 9E outcomes. All included avariety of teaching methods on biomedical ethics, principles of evidence-based practice, and searchstrategies for medical evidence, critical appraisal of the literature and disease surveillance/epidemiology.Small projects were available in all programs, although voluntary in Level 7/8 programs and mandatoryin Level 9E programs.Conclusions: There appear to be few differences in research training and learning outcomes from Level7 and Level 9E programs, although Level 9E programs have a more systematic approach and assurancethat all graduates can achieve the higher outcomes. Barriers to successful implementation relate tofinding curriculum space and sufficient research training capacity for all medical students.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 11 Oct 2016


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