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Open Access Research article

Students’ view upon graduation: a survey of medical education in Taiwan

Wing P Chan12*, Ting-Yu Wu12, Ming-Shium Hsieh3, Ting-Ywan Chou4, Chih-Shung Wong5, Ji-Tseng Fang6, Nen-Chung Chang7, Chuang-Ye Hong78* and Chii-Ruey Tzeng9

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Radiology, Wan Fang Hospital, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

2 Department of Radiology, School of Medicine, College of Medicine, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

3 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, School of Medicine, College of Medicine, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

4 Department of Radiology, School of Medicine, Fu-Jen Catholic University, and Cardinal Tien Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan

5 Department of Anesthesiology, Cathay General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan

6 Department of Nephrology, School of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taipei, Taiwan

7 Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medicine, College of Medicine, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

8 Department of Internal Medicine, Wan Fang Hospital, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

9 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, School of Medicine, College of Medicine, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan

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BMC Medical Education 2012, 12:127  doi:10.1186/1472-6920-12-127

Published: 22 December 2012

Abstract

Background

Improving the quality of medical education is a key goal of government policy in Taiwan. The aim of this study was to reflect the responses of medical education from the perspective of graduating medical students in Taiwan. This is the first survey study of medical education in Taiwan.

Methods

Using the Medical School Graduation Questionnaire from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), we distributed 406 questionnaires to medical students of four medical schools in their last semester, and received 270 back (response rate, 66.5%). There were 11 medical schools in Taiwan. Most questions were assessed on a 5-point Likert scale.

Results

Students identified genetics, biochemistry, and ethics as the three most important premedical subjects preparing them for medical education and gross anatomy, physiology, and pharmacology as the three most helpful basic science subjects preparing them for clinical clerkships and electives. Most Taiwanese students were satisfied with their learning experience in internal medicine. Only 55.9% of students were confident that they had acquired the clinical skills required to become a resident, and 70.7% were satisfied with the quality of their medical education.

Conclusion

The study offers preliminary results on the views of graduating students on the medical education system in Taiwan. In particular, our government and medical educators need to continuously put more effort into building students’ confidence in their clinical skills.

Keywords:
Medical education; Questionnaire; Student viewpoint; Survey; Taiwan