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Educational Value of Doctor Trainee Employments (“Student Doctor”) —A Questionnaire Study

Journal article
Authors Sven Wallerstedt
M Odqvist
Susanna Maria Wallerstedt
Published in International Journal Clinical Medicine
Volume 6
Issue 7
Pages 469-474
ISSN 2158-284X
Publication year 2015
Published at Institute of Medicine, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine
Pages 469-474
Language en
Keywords Doctor Trainee, Education, Medical Student, Professional Progress, Student Doctor
Subject categories Clinical Medicine


In Sweden, medical students can work as employed doctor trainees under supervision during medical school breaks. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the educational value of such employments, as well as to compare university and non-university positions. Method: A questionnaire was administered to all employed doctor trainees at Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Gothenburg, in 2003-2004 (n = 67) plus all students in last term medical school 2005 who had had such a position inside or outside this university hospital (n = 43). The questionnaire included questions on trainee position/s, as well as statements regarding the educational value. Result: 75 unique individuals returned a filled-in questionnaire (response rate: 78%). The respondents experienced the positions as valuable concerning gain in professional confidence (mean ± standard deviation: 3.9 ± 1.1; 1 = total disagreement to 5 = total agreement) and independence (3.9 ± 1.1), subsequent learning in medical school (4.3 ± 0.9), and future professional work (4.2 ± 1.0). The gain in professional confidence and independence was greater for those who had worked in a non-university hospital (n = 17) than in a university hospital (n = 29): 4.4 ± 0.6 vs. 3.6 ± 3.6, P = 0.011; 4.3 ± 0.7 vs. 3.6 ± 1.1, P = 0.038. Conclusion: Employment as a doctor trainee seems to facilitate subsequent learning in medical school and enhance professional progress; the latter is particularly prominent in non-university hospitals.

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