The Great Gamble? A Mixed-Methods Study of Factors Influencing Medical Students in Specialty Choice

Background Career planning remains relatively unexplored as a domain of medical education. Our aim was to explore the career planning journey undertaken by medical students.

Methods Mixed-methods data collection was employed. An online questionnaire was distributed to interns (Foundation Year 1 (FY1) equivalents) across Ireland. A focus group was held to further explore themes. Quantitative and qualitative data analysis was applied to findings.

Educational needs of foundation doctors caring for dying patients

The aim of this study was to identify the educational needs of year one North of Scotland foundation doctors caring for dying patients. A postal questionnaire approach was used. The results from the questionnaire (79/132 respondents) confirmed that year one foundation doctors are frequently exposed to patient death, with 61% finding their most memorable patient death to be emotionally distressing. A quarter (26%) of respondents had recent experience of significant personal bereavement.